18th February 2016
Behind any successful brand is a team of storytelling experts who recognise the importance of sharing the brand story, their promise to the customer and the ‘why’ differentiator between one brand to another. However, in today’s connected world, brands with a global reach need to be evermore conscious of how their story, service and product conveys in different countries.
It’s no easy feat though, with figures from Gala stating that:
- It would take 83 languages to reach 80% of all people in the world, and over 7,000 to reach everyone!
- 56% of individuals felt that the ability to obtain information in their own language is more important than price.
- 95% of Chinese online consumers prefer using websites in their own language. Yet, Surprisingly only 1% of US online retailers offer sites specific to China – that’s a big market not to be talking to.
To go global, brands therefore need to think ‘global’.
At Silver, we’re storytelling experts and are well rehearsed in localising brand messaging into a whole host of countries and therefore languages (Chinese too, I must add), allowing brands to be truly global. We understand that it’s not just as easy as taking the English content and simply translating this into the desired languages. Instead, we use a much more advanced ‘trans-creation process’, which recreates precise brand content for multilingual consumption, whilst preserving the creative and emotive intent often lost in conventional translation methods. We give consideration to cultural, political and religious differences when brainstorming the next big idea.
This allows brands to truly ‘talk the right language’ whilst avoiding any nasty surprises. For example, not so long ago food and beverage giant Kraft foods were left with an embarrassing press story after unveiling the name of their new snack food brand, ‘Mondelez’, which in Russia had a very different meaning (See article).
Of course we’re surrounded by hugely positive cases too, from the likes of super brands such as Nike, McDonald’s and Apple who deliver a consistent story and brand message but very carefully consider cultural differences in their marketing. Go to McDonalds in New Zealand and you’ll find a Kiwi burger. In India you’ll see chicken maharaja-macs on the menu, allowing McDonalds to be competitive and successful in each and every region.
Other successful, global brands such as HSBC have also put their globalisation strategy at the very heart of their company ethos, and have long been known as the global bank whilst gaining global trust due to this.
To summarise, when creating your next beautifully crafted global campaign, be sure to consider more than just the language spoken. Instead, evaluate the cultural, political and religious differences in each region and tailor your offering accordingly. Whilst this cannot guarantee campaign success, it does however drastically reduce the chances of causing negative press or worse still, offending your audience. Alternatively, we can always give you a helping hand here at Silver.
Jeremy is an expert in talking the local lingo and in the driving seat of many of Silver’s global initiatives.