Think Global, Act Local

September 4, 2017

By Daniel Robey, Founder & CEO, Think Jam

For international organisations, the Holy Grail of global marketing is high value, audience-first, trusted content at scale, which is simple to customise for individual markets. But how easy is it to achieve and what are the key considerations to take note of when planning a global content strategy?

As an agency operating in both the UK and the US, it is innate in the history of our business to understand the needs of a leading territory. Our global content team speak with hundreds of International Stakeholders daily, providing quality localised content across the globe. We are continuously looking at the opportunities presented by International Markets and ways in which we can enhance best practice for seamless global asset delivery.

Working in this way has helped expand our view of global markets enabling us to go further and deliver best in class global content solutions.

I’d like to share some of the learnings we’ve picked up on the balance between global strategy and localisation and the benefits of a centralised creative team.

1) AGILITY AND SCALABILITY

Whether you need to upscale teams for 70+ countries or coordinate territories from one time zone, the ability to respond at speed to an ever changing marketing landscape, whilst ensuring quality and brand messages are not diluted, is core to the role of the central team. This element of the strategy relieves pressures and drives communication between all those involved with the campaign, as well as offering efficiency and brand control, without impeding the freedom of local territories.

2) TIME AND COST EFFICIENCY

Agility and scalability are only achieved through clear communication and project management, customised to the task at hand and adaptable to scale and change. Centralised management and production reduces time and duplication, and therefore reduces costs, even though the rate of change increases.

3) BRAND GUARDIANSHIP

To protect the integrity and values of a brand, through consistency of quality and tone of voice, while making sure markets and central control learn from each other to evolve the campaign in real time, is a step that should go hand in hand with the localisation process. The central team is critical when it comes to driving synergies and economies of scale. They provide best in class content to your markets, whilst maintaining creative guardianship over your brand and product.

4) THINK GLOBAL, ACT LOCAL

A common mistake is to focus too heavily on eliminating language barriers and translating content, rather than truly tailoring it and making it relevant to a particular audience.

Notions of a centralised production team and brand guardianship mean nothing without a highly talented local team with their own targeted communications plan. Any global brand needs to be agile enough to give the local teams the autonomy to speak directly to their consumer and any centralised team needs to embrace those nuances and freedoms set within the product’s brand paradigm.

5) DISTRIBUTION

As the world around us is constantly changing, digital content needs to work much harder to cut through and keep up. Reaching audiences in a locally relevant way is critical to campaign success and that includes utilising the most relevant distribution platforms.

Monitoring where your local audiences are and how they want to consume content is an essential part of your global content marketing strategy.

In a world that is continuously striving for consolidation of business processes, our global content team are paving the way to evolve this approach and simplify for clients. We are operating like this daily, producing, delivering and serving thousands of rich media and social creative executions all over the world for multiple global brands and properties, on all platforms and in all languages. We have seen that a central team are critical when it comes to driving synergies and economies of scale, whilst preserving specific local needs and cultural considerations.

If you have any ideas on how this process is currently working for you, or how you’d like to see it working, I am keen to keep the conversation moving. Please feel free to get in touch with me directly to share your thoughts.

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