Leveraging the ability to scale a strategy and product to numerous markets makes a global standardization strategy so successful.
Expanding a product globally increases market reach, providing greater revenue potential for businesses. Marketing internationally is challenging, and developing a strategy to use from one country to the next is key.
A global standardization strategy is a top choice to implement to conform to a standard approach when marketing internationally. This strategy saves time and cost — two critical components to quickly and efficiently building success.
Building a Strong Global Standardization Strategy
When Coca-Cola wanted to expand to new international markets, a global standardization strategy was the top choice. Coca-Cola recognized they could market their product similarly in multiple countries. With the product a beverage for many to enjoy, the product could remain relatively unchanged from market to market. Coca-Cola used the same design theme, but the languages used differed. This strategy was cost-effective and efficient.
Today, Coca-Cola operates in more than 200 countries. The key is to market the product the same and be mindful of the audience. Coca-Cola needed to ensure the design could apply to various locations. Once the design was chosen, it was simple to alter the language.
Brand consistency is critical but takes strategic planning to apply to multiple countries. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Standardize from the start. Standardization becomes more complex if attempted later in a strategy. Developing standardized messaging and design choices from the beginning will prevent future roadblocks that delay timelines.
Less is more. The more simplistic a product is, the easier it will be to market. The easier it is to leverage opportunities in a new market, the less altering of a product, including the packaging and marketing message.
Audience consideration. Economic standards and cultural nuances will play a large role. Can your product be viewed the same in the U.S. as it’s viewed in Brazil? What may be a luxury product in one country is not in another. The product must be tailored to multiple markets without jeopardizing brand appeal. Having a brand recognized in multiple parts of the world while appealing to diverse markets is vital.
A robust localization management platform can help manage all the moving parts of a campaign to ensure success.
Standardization vs. Localization
When researching global standardization strategies, the term localization may come up. Before developing a strategic plan to enter new markets, it’s important to understand the difference between localization and standardization. Standardization refers to a standardized marketing strategy that can be used internationally in different markets. This strategy focuses on high-quality content and brand consistency in every single market.
A localization strategy centers on approaching each market at an individual level. Localization entails translating every detail, from cultural nuances to tag lines. Both are global approaches that can be used as individual strategies or combinations. For example, localization can be approached in a standardized or non-standardized way. While two languages may differ, the translation process can be handled similarly regardless of the language and locale.
The standardized approach involves:
- developing copy in the U.S.
- sending content to a global translation partner
- completing translation and review
- delivering to in-country reviewers
- publishing content
The non-standardized approach is the understanding that the demographic differs from country to country. A unique marketing technique must be developed to cater to one locale versus one that works in multiple. The benefit of the non-standardized approach is the increased odds of success in any given market, and this is due to the tailor-made approach invested in the strategy. The downside is that the non-standardized method is significantly more expensive than a standardized approach. It is also harder to improve upon and scale because the strategy is developed for one market.
Companies need to be able to scale and adjust to changing demands. Much like Coca-Cola, a standardized strategy can be replicated easily, creating a better plan in the long run with fewer mistakes. Leveraging the ability to scale a strategy and product to numerous markets makes a global standardization strategy so successful.