While the basics of digital marketing for businesses don’t change that much, there are specifics that are relevant to local markets. To dominate locally, it’s achieved by attracting a strong online following and by building a powerful position with the search engines.
To succeed, it’s necessary to dig deep into what works in the specific country that you’re targeting within the Asia region; simply adjusting the approach for the Asia-Pacific generally isn’t enough.
Here are some tips on how to approach digital marketing in Asian countries.
Search Marketing Research Per Country
Looking at search terms (keywords) on a per country basis is important to understand how language is used there. Appreciating whom you’re targeting with your search engine optimization is also critical.
For instance, if you’re wanting to target the large expat community in the capital of Thailand, then working with an agency covering the SEOBangkok area is ideal. They will be familiar with the expat community, see print magazines targeting to this group, and have a clearer sense of what matters to them. Staff can tap into online sites to see discussions and run searches to dig deep into relevant topics to see how they overlap with their client’s products or services.
Targeting Locals or Expats with Digital Marketing
Using search tools, it’s possible to find what’s being searched within an Asian country, such as Thailand. This can be in English or in Thai language searches. Marketing to locals or expats then becomes easier because content marketing, for example, can be produced and published in whatever language is most applicable to the likely audience. This increases the chances of attracting the appropriate demographic.
A local-based agency is much better placed to achieve this than a global one. They have the local knowledge, people on the ground in that area, and are clear about how to target the right audience.
Local PPC Marketing
For local pay-per-click marketing, it’s also necessary to tailor the message to the local audience.
Advertising – whether textual or graphical banners – should aim for the right people. As such, should the advert be focused on expats or local people?
If it’s in Thailand, for instance, then Thai actors or still photos of models should be utilized within the graphical ad along with Thai script overlaid to get the message across. Any cultural issues with communication are also handled well locally to avoid a faux pas.
For expats, then it should be still shots of American, European, British or Australian models with English language used. Also, the language should be sensitive to local cultural differences. The vernacular, and especially the slang, is different in English-speaking countries too, and the advertisements should properly reflect this. While it might seem like a minor point, it significantly affects engagement rates and click-throughstoo.
While globalization may have you thinking that everything is a one-size-fits-all solution now, that’s not the case with digital marketing. The differences, sometimes subtle and other times less so, matter and change the outcome significantly when adapting to the market.