Social media has made international trade more accessible

“Social media has made international trade more accessible”, says Tuck Shop Trading Co.’s Founder Lyndsay Borschke, in an interview with Jeff Brownlee of ExportWise, a publication of EDC, Canada’s export credit agency.

96% of consumers are outside the United States

This easier access via social media is important for U.S. exporters in particular — because — as Sarah Mitchell writes in — 96% of the world’s consumers live outside the United States.  But to effectively reach overseas markets via social media, content needs to be produced for a global audience, as Mitchell details, citing an earlier article by Scott Abel.

Global internet market in excess of 2.5 billion

Mitchell details an interesting figure, citing John Yunker, “who claims the global market for international domain names (IDN) is greater that 2.5 billion people.   The same number, (⅓ of the world’s population) is active on social media, as Esther Curiel writes.

Content marketing helps open international markets

Curiel recommends, therefore, “that brands [should seek to] find their audiences in those [social] channels, where they are already spending a good portion of their online time.” And content marketing to global audiences, she details, will increase brand awareness, trust, likeability, accessibility, and engagement, and ultimately, new business leads.

Global audiences: Uniquely challenging to reach

Global audiences bring unique challenges to brands, Curiel notes. Brands, she writes, “have become adept at adapting their messages for global audiences” with the help of localization partners and translation. In order to accomplish more in international markets, therefore, brands “need to go one step further and be able to listen, react and engage” with local audiences in their language and in ways that elicit interactions.  Adapting for local business culture is also vital.  While “the challenges are significant”, Curiel explains, “so are the opportunities social media can create.”

Implications for your international business

If your business is seeking to expand in international markets, the opportunities social media presents are well worth noting.  It’s also important that the localization practices Esther Curiel details be employed as a means to expand the scope of international social media efforts.  The need to customize social media initiatives in international markets might seem obvious.  However, ensuring these efforts also always change to adapt as well as utilize best practices (while at the same time working in concert with your already existing marketing and business development efforts) is imperative if they are to realize their full potential.

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