What is ‘localization’?
Localization means adapting your product or service to a new country’s environment to increase its appeal to your local target audience. Is it always worth it? What are the challenges of it? Here we take a look at some of the hurdles of localizing your business.
Your product must be localized in some way due to the national and local laws that would apply to your business in a specific corner of the world. This may involve changing the details on the packaging or the way your product or service is marketed. For instance, measuring units will differ from country to country, such as the US which uses the imperial system vs Taiwan, which uses the metric system. When countries such as the UK are taken into consideration (where both systems are in use) things become further complicated. Additionally, it is crucial to use the appropriate language when marketing your product as the use of local idioms and colloquialisms may add a sense of familiarity to your new consumer base.
Is it worth it?
Before you splurge on localizing your business, it is important to first consider the cost-benefit trade off. It will be expensive to change your marketing strategy and/or product or service entirely. Whether spending on these aspects of your business would bring you more profit in the long term is something that should be kept in mind.
How far should you localize?
Another question is the issue of your brand image and USP. It would not be ideal to localize your product to the extent that you lose its distinctive appeal. For example, while the food industry requires the most localization, if your native product stands out for its authentic flavours in a new market, then this may be emphasized in your marketing strategy. Consumers are drawn to familiar things with an inimitable twist, so it is vital to draw the line between being accommodating and being noticeable.
Such decisions need to be made with careful thought and a thorough awareness of the risks and rewards, as well as a proper understanding of cultural differences. For in-depth analysis and advice, contact us for a free online consultation here.