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Going global – is your business prepared in advance?

We understand as a business in its infancy sometimes looking at the big picture can be a daunting and overwhelming task, you don’t want to seem arrogant and certain of your success, trust me we get it! However, as a graphic design agency, we can’t stress the value of branding yourself ready for the global market. The subtle variances in the distinctive features of your brand, be it a logo, the colour of packaging or marketing materials, all contribute to how successful your brand is likely to be. Therefore is it worthwhile having a product that doesn’t relate to people across the world?

In general, it’s extremely difficult for a business person who has no background knowledge of the American food industry to push an item designed specifically for the British market into that already existing space. However, due to the flourishing e-commerce marketplace, more and more products are being exported and imported at an increasingly frightening rate. Preparation from the offset can really be beneficial when aiming to get your product into those expansive American stomachs.

Don’t worry, we know what you’re thinking…where do you start? Being honest, we are really worried that you’d switch off at this point because it feels like we are teaching you the obvious, but in our experience, passion for a start-up often overshadows integral forethought and planning, so please think it through. A brilliant example of global marketing is Huel, a fantastic brand with room to grow.

Global markets move in different ways, you only have to walk down Market Street in the Centre of Manchester and you’ll eventually pass ten different coffee shops, but does the frequency of Mancunian coffee drinkers mean that global success is guaranteed for the big players? Quite simply, no it doesn’t. You don’t have to look past arguably the most recognisable provider of coffee in the world, Starbucks to quickly find without the right preparation you aren’t promised success. For example, the company famously tried to crack the Australian market, I mean our cousins in OZ aren’t too different from the typical Brit or American…are they? By 2014, after 14 years of failing to make any impact and throwing a whole lot of money into the South Pacific, Starbucks pulled out of Australia completely. The multi-national had somehow failed to prepare themselves for the sceptical and savvy Australian coffee market. With locals favouring independent companies and coffee that came at a much cheaper price than what Starbucks was offering.

After the preparation phase of finding out what it is hat your foreign customer based wants, it’s then vital to find out what they like. We understand this is no easy feat but we also know that a good designer and marketeer will already have their fingers on the pulse when it comes to market knowledge. So what do we mean by what customers like? Well, what we want and need to purchase isn’t always what we actually purchase and this is a buying habit that’s commonplace across the world. However what we like is what drives us to buy. For example, just last week despite knowing I had no need whatsoever for a new set of headphones, I bought some. Well, the question then arises, is it intelligent marketing to brand the email (that I believe drove me to purchase, although it could have been a number of other factors) in a way that sells me headphones for the gym, knowing it’s summer, knowing I’m needing to shift the Christmas love handles in time for those beach visits (I know I shouldn’t still be carrying the Christmas weight). This is of course down primarily to individual preference, but as a marketeer knowing the general preferences socially become vital as a company attempts to move into foreign markets.

All good graphic designers should provide business owners with insight regarding cultural colour considerations, for example, a logo and marketing campaign that revolves around blue hues, will in the Western countries symbolise wealth and security, which is why it is a popular colour with banks. In India it’s a colour used to signify strength and is used frequently by sports teams, comparatively in China, it’s seen to be a more feminine colour, in contrast with the traditional idea of pink for a girl and blue for a boy. Cultural considerations shouldn’t end there when it comes to designing a successful global campaign, across the world certain symbols and terminology has grossly varying meanings.

Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.