3 Tips for Effective Regional SEO Marketing
You may have been performing digital marketing for your brand in Singapore, effectively increasing visibility and driving traffic to your website. Both your customers and (more importantly) your boss are happy. So happy, in fact, that your boss wants to expand distribution regionally, and they’ve asked you to handle the online marketing side of things.
You are, of course, happy to oblige. Getting to work, you put together a strategy modelled on your recent past efforts. Still, after a few months of running the same types of ads on social media platforms and Google Ads in the new regional marketplaces, you’re getting less than stellar results.
You’re targeting the same demographic with the same type of information, but you don’t seem to be connecting with likely buyers of your products. And it’s not like you’re trying to connect with tribes in the forests of Brazil. Your online marketing strategy is focusing on the ASEAN countries. You’ve visited these countries before, and you feel they should be responding much more positively to your marketing efforts than they are. What’s going wrong? Maybe you’re just not as familiar with the target market as you thought you were?
Concept of Localisation in Regional SEO Marketing
In the professional translation industry, there is a specialised branch that deals with this whole concept of connecting and communicating with people in a foreign market. The concept is called localisation. It was created out of a need for multinational brands expanding into different markets worldwide to communicate effectively with their target audiences.
But localisation goes way beyond the translation of languages. It encompasses every facet that separates one country from another.
Language, religion, culture, lifestyle, and politics may all be different from one country to the next. For your content, ads, and offers to resonate with your particular target market, they have to address those people in a language that resonates with the way they think and live.
Localisation is as much about saying the right things culturally and without offending anyone as it is about speaking the correct language. It’s about ensuring the words you use in your content and ads achieve their intended result.
Localisation is now a multi-billion-dollar industry in itself. The brands it represents are famous household names worldwide. These brands have learned the value of looking at a product from a different perspective and approaching their marketing exercises from that fresh perspective.
Make Use of Local Experience and Expertise
The lessons learned from the concept of local SEO can be easily applied to regional SEO marketing as well. Most localisation companies are large enterprises working out of multiple offices worldwide, wherever they offer their services.
Your SEO marketing strategy can take the same structure, for instance, by partnering with an SEO agency in Bangkok or a digital marketing agency in Kuala Lumpur.
Partnering with people in these markets who are in the same business, and speak the same language, is invaluable in achieving effective digital marketing. They can quickly spot content, ads, keywords and synonyms that may make perfect sense to you, but strike a false chord from a local perspective.
The best part is that these regional SEO agencies are staffed by people who look at SEO marketing in basically the same way you do. They understand conversion and bounce rates, keyword density, and Google rankings as well as you do. They also know what is at stake in an ongoing SEO programme.
But they’re marketers as well. And they’re in their element. These valuable foreign agencies can also help point you toward a particular hot concept or local activity that would be an ideal tie-in to your brand’s products or services, and which you’d never know about without their guidance.
Multinational companies learned long ago that simply being on the ground in your new marketplace doesn’t mean that you know anything. You have to be part of the community as well. The employees in these regionally-based digital marketing companies are members of their communities and can offer insights foreigners won’t be able to grasp unless they’re specifically explained.
Be Open-minded About Regional SEO Marketing
The third tip on our list, “Be open-minded,” is probably something you feel is second nature to you as a digital marketing professional. But it is worth repeating and keeping in mind as you venture into the world of regional online marketing and regional SEO marketing.
Creative marketers often get really excited about a campaign or ad that they have high hopes for. But to another culture in a different marketplace, your brilliant idea might be misunderstood and go down like a lead balloon. Getting away from your usual way of thinking is vital to be able to market effectively across many countries and cultures.
Learn to value the input from your partnering agencies. You’ve chosen to work with them for a reason. Respect what they have to say, try and learn from it, and apply it to your other ideas in the future. You’ll begin to adopt the right perspective for your target market and find that your ideas will start to result in the conversions and sales that your brand has always hoped for.
You’ll also become more valuable to your brand for your ability to adjust your perspective according to the market. Once you have that ability under your belt for the first few countries, your marketing efforts will gather steam as you have to make fewer adjustments to your campaigns and learn to work with your partner digital agencies as a close-knit team. With any luck at all, you’ll soon become a valued member of a series of partner agencies that work in harmony with each other to help clients expand their operations effectively across the region.
By keeping these three tips in mind when you pursue your marketing, you just may learn something valuable about each country and your target customers in that market which will increase your success. Your efforts, along with those of your partner agencies, will start to achieve the results for your brand that you’ve always dreamed of.