One of my cousin-sister is a student of archaeology.
She’s got a passion for ancient cultures and civilization.
…A couple of days back she invaded our house and literally dragged me to one of her friend’s beautiful house backyard, where I had some weird but useful discussion with her friend.
Apparently, she wanted me to meet someone whom she idolizes.
Her friend turned out to be a direct marketer. As you may expect, we started discussing everything related to marketing, and the Web in general.
After about a little over an hour of friendly discussion, we had a heated argument over global marketing strategies.
Monty (my cousin’s friend) had a personal view that when you make a direct response website selling products (such as money making programs, network marketing etc.) you don’t necessarily need to take in consideration the geographical aspect of the market.
…He believes these products are for everyone working on the Web regardless of local or global market.
I, on the other hand, a firm believer of small niches insisted that no matter what the product is, it should be offered to a small niche market IF you’re a small guy.
..If that is not true then why experts have formulated global marketing strategies that deals with micro markets?
What’s the point of collecting demographic data? Etc.
I further reiterated, and to make a valid statement using a real-world example talked about the search engine’s move towards multi-lingual support.
I said today everybody talks about keywords, key phrases, power and generic words, keyword densities and carefully crafted sentences.
……Emphasis is given on the way you make a systematic arrangement of specific words within your Web page to achieve a higher ranking.
…Now do you think if someone has to make a Web site in Japanese language with Japanese related keywords, key phrases etc., can make an “effective” use of the English search engine placement resource?
…because every language has its own grammar, set of rules, style and vocabulary.
A Japanese Web site designer or webmaster would definitely find it difficult to make effective use of the English language search engine placement resource.
He would definitely be looking for some good Japanese search engine placement resource that can provide the needed knowledge or services to him in his own native language.
Now, don’t you think if somebody could come up with a Japanese search engine keyword in this case, would make a killing? Of course, s/he would.
How about adding some unique features or benefits to it?
Man, you’re getting into the right game.
Although, English is currently the most widely used language on the Net, a great need exists for non-English products and resources like I mentioned above as in Search Engine’s case, and countless other areas too, because most of the Web resources comes in the English language.
So, if your mother language is Japanese but you can understand good English, you can always convert your newly acquired knowledge into useful Japanese version of the product.
…Doing this, you’ll have lesser competition, and you will target the right market. Making money then becomes piece of cake
I would bet that the guys who started up Yahoo! never imagined that they would have a complete Japanese version that works much like the English version does. Check out the Japanese Yahoo.
Even in the case of major large corporations, companies are finding ways to get more flexible, multi-lingual, customer-centric and transparent to sustain and augment their presence in the international markets.
Already, plenty of major American companies with huge marketing budgets have blown it overseas, simply because they didn’t do their homework in their proposed markets.
Going global requires many considerations. These include customs, values, culture, money, language, economic health, lifestyle etc.
Here I just talked about the language aspect. More social and legal issues exist than I could possibly cover here, and they all vary from country to country and from region to region.
The one place I suggest worth checking out in this connection is a directory called International Business Resources.
From the corporate perspective as well, I cited Monty some other funny but true examples.
Years ago, Braniff Airlines came up with a catchy slogan to promote its new upholstery: ‘Fly in Leather’, The Spanish translation was, unfortunately, ‘Fly naked’.
Sex may sell, but it didn’t help Braniff.
Neither Pepsi nor Coke had much luck the first time they tested the Chinese market.
The Pepsi slogan “Pepsi brings you back to life” translates to “Pepsi brings your ancestors back from the grave.” Yikes!
Coke used a different tactic.
…It tried to come up with Chinese letters that would be pronounced “Coca-Cola.” What it actually spelled in Chinese was “Bite the wax tadpole.” (Sounds like something a surfer might say.)
So the point I’m trying to make is — it’s getting increasingly important to customize your product(s) for specific markets and learn as much as possible before hitting those markets, because competition is building up rapidly.
In my humble opinion, that’s the ONLY way to get success at a rapid pace, and in the right way.
People with generic products will keep on spending their time and dollars in a close loop endlessly.
If they really want to make their products sell, they must identify the right market and customize their wares according to the preferences of the market they choose to serve.
Over the period, I have learned that personalization and customization are the two important areas every entrepreneur should explore seriously, if they are to make their business successful online.
But what happened to our discussion?
Monty and I constantly talked about more than 2 hours. His vision was realistic, but some of his ideas didn’t make any sense to me. So I thought I should share this experience with you.
Do you know what Monty said after the discussion rolled up?
“Amin, you’re really a hard nut to crack. I’m sold.
Ego gratification, ya know. Lol..
…It’s for the first time somebody bogged me down.
So the moral of the story is no matter what product or service you offer, you must understand the implications of offering it to the market you want it to sell.
The more you understand the market, the more you can sell to it, even if you’re really small.
Every other thing then becomes secondary.
What do you think?
Ah, I know. You’re convinced. 🙂
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