We’ll get onto the ins and outs of what localisation services actually do further on in this article, but let’s begin by recognising a universal truth: the world’s shrinking. Boundaries and borders are blurring, and as they do, we’re being brought closer together. But what does that mean for business? That it’s easier than ever to branch out, grow, reach new markets and do so effectively.
But wait, a common misconception is tripping businesses up.
Somewhere along the way, a misguided message has begun being propagated: that as the world gets smaller, cultures are fusing together, leading to one homogenous, shared experience.
Stop. Think about it. It’s simply not the case.
While we might be becoming more familiar with one other, if anything, when faced with traditions different to our own, we’re all the more likely to affirm our own intrinsic values.
Think about when you go on holiday.
You may enjoy trying the new foods, visiting a temple/cathedral/castle or two and gawking at the locals doing something you’d just never see back home. It’s exciting, exhilarating, even, but it’s certainly not comfortable. It’s not familiar, and you know there are deeper layers of understanding you’re missing. You start to value your home comforts, and if you’ve been away for long enough, a rush of relief will hit you as soon as you step back onto home soil.
How does this apply to business? It means there’s no such thing as a generalised message. No matter what we say, we’re always speaking from our own worldview, and while people in our own country may identify with us, what are the chances people in another country and culture do, on every level? They’re slim.
The point? “Worldwide campaigns” and believing that one size fits all is holding businesses back from cross-border success.
The solution? Tapping into the language, beliefs, values and essence of the foreign markets you want to target by hiring localisation services.
Another universal truth: businesses make sales by building trust.
You may be sharing your message in another language, but is it having the effect you intended? Or are you leaving your clients in that “holiday limbo”? Faced with foreignness? Outside their comfort zone? They may find it interesting, amusing, even, but they’re more than aware that they’re looking into something they don’t fully understand. As you can imagine, that’s not conducive to business.
The takeaway? Forget trying to market globally. Focus, instead, on the specific people you want to aim your business at. The method? Localisation.
Yes, you’re thinking translation, but take it one step further. Localisation services adapt your message to fit into your target market’s comfort zone. It transforms foreign to familiar and creates immediate trust because you’re now on the same wavelength as the people reading it, literally speaking their language on every level.
The very basics of localisation? Making sure references are country-specific. If you’re reading about a service in Europe but get to the price and realise it’s in dollars, it suddenly feels as if it applies to you less. You’re used to using imperial measurements, but a brand is selling in metric – they’re no longer speaking your language.
But localisation goes so much further and could, ultimately, mean the difference between the failure or success of a brand and/or product. It leads to products changing altogether. Did you know that McDonald’s doesn’t sell beef in India? It could even mean that your brand name needs to change. Did you know that Burger King is called Hungry Jack’s in Australia?
Launching a website, app, software or videogame to a new market? Make sure nothing’s standing in its way with a bit of guidance from us, a trusted localisation company. From linguistic tweaks to complete product overhauls and SEO copywriting to technological tips and tricks, we hold the key to your success, so reach out and grab it!