6 Things North American Marketers Need to Know When Marketing Internationally

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Sarah Zuccaro

International Product Manager

Spoiler: It’s not the same as marketing in North America

More and more frequently, I’m seeing requests from North American (NA) marketers looking to reach a worldwide audience. That’s really no surprise, since we’ve seen a 35% increase in International marketing based out of North America since 2014. And since that number is anticipated to grow exponentially by 2016, North American marketers should take a step back and consider the way they go to market in these geographies. The best practices that work in North America are not the same as the smaller international markets

Here are 6 things savvy North American Marketers know about marketing internationally:

#1 – Size matters

The most common request I’ve seen from NA marketers is to apply the same company size filters they are used to using in North American campaigns, to their international efforts. It’s important to understand the differences in population size among the countries being targeted. For example, did you know that the population of Australia and New Zealand combined is roughly the equivalent of the state of Texas? With this in mind, it’s clear that applying the same company size filters you are comfortable with in North America won’t heed the same results in smaller countries.

#2 – When size doesn’t matter, development does

While most countries NA marketers look to target are significantly smaller in size that the NA market they are used to, some are not so small. In fact, the country of Brazil, for example, is comparable to North America in size. Brazil is one of the emerging BRIC markets, but at this time Brazilian technology market is not as developed as in North America. Therefore, the best approach to take when marketing in Brazil is to follow the best practices of marketing in smaller countries.

#3 – Size of Companies

Did you know that only .13% of all companies in NA have over 1,000 employees? Or that 95% of all companies in France have less than 10 employees? Company sizes across the globe are largely under 1,000 – which means applying company size filters in different regions can be difficult. But it can be done – marketers just need to understand the company sizes typical of the region they are targeting.

#4 – Understanding Laws and Regulations

Many NA Marketers hope for international CPL’s to be in line with the NA CPL’s they are used to. Given the landscape of the countries and their markets, CPL’s will vary. For example, in Australia, even when accounting for the exchange rate, everyday items are typically between 40%-50% more expensive than the same item would be in the United States. This is true of the standard cost per lead as well. And in Germany, the double opt-in laws require leads to confirm – through 2 separate sources – that they wish to view a piece of content. Things like these contribute to the overall cost per lead in regions.

#5 – Speak their language – literally

The best way to go to market in these foreign countries is with localized content. According to TechTarget’s Media Consumption study, researchers in LATAM, for example, have vocalized that they do not have access to enough content in their native language.

#6 – Communication is key

If you’re part of an organization with regional offices, reach out to your localized counterparts – they can likely provide you with insight to the market(s) you are interested in reaching, and they could already have content in-language for you to use.

Those are the top 6 things marketers should keep in mind when looking to target international markets. Stay tuned for more international marketing tips – coming soon! If you have any more insight to share with our audience, please feel free to leave a comment below or connect with me on LinkedIn.

content, international demand generation, international marketing, lead filtering

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