How to create a winning global marketing & sales strategy

We know the dream of going global is in the heart of every entrepreneur, but you know what they say: if it was easy, everyone would do it. The next section of our Going Global series will help you create the foundation for a winning global marketing and sales strategy. It may not be easy, but we know you can do it.

Step 1: Choose locally appropriate marketing & sales channels

Has one of your salespeople told you “The local market isn’t responding to the product,” sending you into a flurry of trying to figure out what features you might add to make it a success? Or, have you heard from your sales team that “The sales cycle is twice as long in this country”?

These may be accurate reports, or they may be excuses for poor performance. It’s hard to tell since the product is unproven in the new market and the right sales channels aren’t always clear. Early on in your marketing efforts, it’s helpful to focus on channels that are easy to measure, easy to manage digitally and easy to scale, such as:

  • Social media
  • Online advertising
  • SEO

Also, contact local influencers like bloggers or public personalities and ask for their endorsements via links and social media.

Step 2: Translate and iterate

Translation does not equal market entry (although we wish it did!). Just because you’ve translated your site, app description or app, doesn’t mean your target foreign market will automatically find you. You’ve still got to hustle like a startup. Here’s how to ramp up your translated offerings to help you effectively enter that target market.

  • Create a simple landing page in the foreign language
  • Test that page’s performance and iterate based on results
  • Try local AdWords on a small scale to test the waters
  • For apps, try localizing a simple translated version of it in the local app store


Step 3: Tune into the conversation

Translating user-generated content is one of the best ways to show your new market that you hear them and you understand what they want. Start by translating:

  • User reviews
  • Facebook messages
  • Tweets
  • Any other user-generated content

This content has just as much power as your own content, if not more. According to Nielsen’s 2011 Global Trust in Advertising report, 70% of the 28,000 respondents in 56 countries revealed that they trust online customer reviews.

Marketers know that social proof sells, so the more people who are talking about you, the more you’ll sell. Starting out, you may not have user-generated content from your new market, which is why translating what you do have is so important. There’s no reason why you can’t reuse material across markets!

While the goal should be to provide translations in real-time—user comments should be translated as soon as appearing—this is impossible for traditional translation agencies. The volume of content is too high, too fast and too dynamic. With Gengo, you’ll not only keep up, but find yourself ahead of the game.

For more tips on building a scalable strategy for international markets, read our free eBook: Going Global, Part II: Lean Globalization.


Lauren Van Mullem

The author

Lauren Van Mullem

Lauren assists in content production for Gengo's marketing team. As a former food and travel writer, she has experience communicating with all kinds of people from around the world and believes in celebrating different cultures through understanding them.

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