So your brand’s gone global? Congratulations on conquering the world. While marketing to an international audience is very exciting, there's a lot more to consider while devising a social media strategy to speak to a global audience. Here are some tips and considerations for your social media content strategy when speaking to an international audience:
1) Rethink mobile.
When we say “mobile-friendly” here in the Western world we are usually talking about iPhones, Androids or even the newest Microsoft phones. When your brand is speaking to both developing and developed countries, it’s important to think about the level of technology in the mobile devices used across that geographic location. For example, iPhones may be widely used in urban areas where there is faster economic growth, but folks who live in the same country but in smaller, less developed towns and villages may still be using feature phones. Both of these types phones are able to access the internet, but the way that your content is displayed on these varying types of devices may differ. Keep that in mind when creating visual content and make sure you’re targeting the optimized content based on platform and device.
2) Time zones.
This should go without saying, but is easy to forget: posting in the correct time zone and optimal posting times within specific markets will make a huge difference in engagement on your social channels. For example, just because it’s convenient for you to post at 3pm Eastern Standard Time does not necessarily allow you to maximize engagement in Tokyo when it's 5am the next day.
3) A picture says a thousand words.
The best part about using Instagram as an international marketing platform is that the images you post can speak for themselves, therefore eliminating the timely and expensive process of translating copy. Instagram accounts that have the most followers and engagement tend to stick to a similar theme and aesthetic so that followers know exactly what they’ll be inviting into their feed when they hit “follow.” The similar thematic elements from photo to photo and overall curated aesthetic of the account alleviate the need to provide worded context, thus appealing to a wide range of cultures and languages bonded together by a single interest.
4) The locals are the experts.
Not sure how to speak to a specific market? Instead of guessing that something will do well when shared in a foreign market, develop relationships with local content creators and social media specialists who can help guide your strategy in their specific market. With the helpful guidance of local experts, you can refine your voice and improve your presence internationally.