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Developing Your Brand and Going Global

by Lilt  Han Mai, Associate Director, Demand Generation  ·  Thought Leadership

Marketing and localization are playing increasingly important and collaborative roles in shaping global customer experiences. In fact, according to this year’s State of Global Experience Report, Marketing is the team most responsible for managing global experience. As the world continues to become more globally connected than ever, it’s no surprise that global marketing can have such a profound impact on the quality of customer experience a company or organization delivers.

And with so many products and services available, customers are now in charge of deciding which brand they want to engage with — and oftentimes, it’s the brand with the best experience across all touchpoints where customers engage. While 87% of companies consider brand presence in their global go-to-market strategies, not all are prioritizing localization as a key component of a seamless and personalized customer journey. As a result, the most successful global companies will be those that build not only meaningful brand strategies but also a complete, end-to-end customer journey when launching in new international markets.

Below are four best practices for developing a global brand.

1. Build a Unified Marketing Strategy

Before launching into new markets, get your team on the same page. With so many digital touchpoints along the customer journey, it can get confusing to iron out who is in charge of what. To avoid any mishaps, take the time to collaborate with stakeholders and members of marketing, product, and customer experience teams to appropriately assign ownership and approval processes over key digital touchpoints.Once you’ve identified your key players and strategies, you’ll want to document your global marketing strategy into a resource hub. This will serve as a single source of truth, as well as include any necessary processes, brand positioning, and messaging for team members to refer to. Consider creating a brand or style guide for your linguists and content creators to further ensure brand consistency and cohesiveness across your multiple campaigns and languages.

2. Curate Content for Specific Markets

With millions of global products, products, and services now available online, the biggest challenge is standing out. The solution? Content. From emails to social media posts to support centers on your website, content is what can transform your global brand presence from good to great. That said, research is key to building a brand and content strategy that resonates with your target audiences. Perform a deep-dive into the market’s linguistic nuances, cultural norms, brand expectations, and purchasing preferences to ensure that your content strategy resonates with your audience. For example, some countries or regions may prefer a more playful tone over a serious one, and others may prefer video content on mobile view over desktop. And since no two markets are the same, it’s extremely important to create content that provides optimal value to your potential customers. And lastly, work with linguists and global experience specialists to pinpoint SEO keywords to get your brand’s name in front of your target audience. Since 93% of all digital customer experiences starting with search engines, you’ll want to make sure that your content contains keywords and phrases your customers are searching for.

3. Set Up Your Content for Success

One of the best ways to save time and money is getting it done right the first time — and this goes the same with localization. Across emails, product content, videos, and more, localization should be at the core of your global brand and content strategy. Placing localization at the beginning of your content process can help eliminate any cultural, linguistic, and development mistakes before they’re live. Rethinking your workflows to consider localization as a strategic part of your brand strategy can help you build a system that is not only cost-effective, but also scalable for other global markets. For example, your marketing, design, and development teams should plan to build a design and code for your website that accounts for varying language lengths. This will ensure that your interface and design has enough space to fit strings in other languages. If not prepared, a second iteration will be needed and require editing and recoding after translation.

4. Streamline Workflows with a Connector-first Approach

Implementing a Connector-first strategy is a great way to streamline your global processes and eliminate any manual and repetitive tasks that take important time away from you and your teams. Replacing the traditional clunky, fragmented process between systems and vendors, Connectors enable you and your teams to request, review, and publish any and all localized content with a single click of a button — all without having to leave your existing CMS and management systems.

"With the help of LILT's connectors, we are able to translate content quickly. It’s faster, easier, and more efficient." - Account Lead at Pint

In addition, Connectors remove challenges and hurdles that often come with changing management systems and vendors, giving you time back to think more strategically about your global brand strategy, instead of going through week-long onboarding sessions.