What you don’t know about your brand could be worth more than you think.
Whether your brand is a long-established domestic winner or a new global product, you probably know more about it than most of your buyers ever will. This level of familiarity is an advantage when selling to your own culture, but it can lead to costly assumptions when you launch it into the global marketplace:
Global Branding Trap #4: “We know our brand better than anyone.”
You may know your products inside and out, but locals in foreign countries know their own people better than you ever will. The more effectively you communicate locally, the more effective you’ll be at marketing your products and growing your business.
Even with the benefit of hindsight in the wake of world-class companies who’ve failed overseas, a surprising number of global companies don’t involve local affiliates when trying to understand a new marketplace. This approach creates significant risks for your brand’s survival, but the bigger risk is that you’ll miss a profitable opportunity that isn’t obvious to outsiders.
Building a work environment where it’s safe for regional workers to make suggestions should also be a key priority. It’s easy to recruit workers in many foreign markets, but understand that many of the locals you’ll hire will be so glad just to have a job with you that they won’t tell you if you’re about to do something that doesn’t make regional sense. In many cultures, especially in Asia and Latin America, you’ll find a tendency to comply with instructions from the top even if your employees know your ideas will fail. You can boost your chance of success by looking for locals with marketing talent and listening to what they have to say about their own culture.
To learn the most efficient way to ensure success in global markets, and get complete details of all 5 Global Branding Traps, check out our parathink briefing: Meeting 21st Century Challenges to Global Healthcare Brands. Click here to get your free copy.
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