What is an integrated global marketing strategy?
Before the internet became as widely used as it is now, only a handful of brands required global marketing strategies. These strategies involved large marketing and sales teams that were necessary for taking big brands into international markets.
As the internet has become increasingly accessible to all, so has the capacity for businesses to go global. And thanks to the internet and social media, anyone can develop an online brand presence, whether it be an e-commerce store, a website, or a social media profile.
However, expanding into new countries and markets presents a set of challenges. It is critical for brands to develop a thoughtful global marketing strategy and plan before launching global marketing efforts. By doing so, the foundation will be laid for seamless adaptation and smooth operations in each country they intend to operate.
What is an integrated global marketing strategy?
A global marketing strategy is an all-encompassing strategy designed to outline a company’s expansion into global markets. Each country has its own unique culture and relationship with products and services. For example, a product might be successful in the United States, but that does not mean it will be successful in the United Kingdom because there are different cultural attitudes and socioeconomic standing.
Therefore, a global strategy involves much more than just selling your products or services in a different country; it involves a detailed analysis of many marketing processes and analytical tools, such as the four Ps of marketing (Product, Promotions, Price, and Place), communications strategy, planning, result tracking, distribution channels, and obtaining social proof.
For a global marketing strategy to be successful, you must know your target market. It is important to understand any cultural differences between the region your business is operating in and the new target region and be familiar with the local brands (i.e., your competitors).
Read more about the difference between a marketing strategy and a marketing plan.
What makes a strategy integrated?
Marketing across many different platforms presents a hurdle. It is important to convey a consistent message, but the more channels used, the harder this can be. For brands going global, consistency is key because it reinforces the brand’s distinctiveness. Integrated marketing campaigns ensure a brand is communicating a consistent message across all its platforms in the regions it operates. It offers uniformity no matter where clients choose to deal with a business.
Not using an integrated marketing plan presents the risk of conveying conflicting messages, which may result in customers perceiving your brand as confused and disjointed. Brands can use integrated global marketing communications to offer a consistent story about their brand, generating more impact with their efforts.
Things to consider when expanding a brand globally
To successfully expand globally and ensure a successful implementation of their integrated global marketing strategy, there are numerous practical considerations.
1. Business Model Adaptability
There will need to be a clear business model for how the brand will operate and adapt to the different cultures of other countries. Will you keep your business uniform or adopt new offerings for a new market?
For example, most of Burger King’s products are standardized, but there are some differences among different countries. In Japan for example, Burger King has introduced a “Spicy Shrimp Whopper,” which has been a success. Using a global marketing strategy, Burger King adapted to the local culture while still maintaining the brand’s core values.
2. Marketing communication method
The marketing channel through which your target audience will receive your marketing messages is another key consideration. This step will help your brand deliver a coherent and consistent message by integrating the various marketing channels available. This process is known as “Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC).” To implement successful integrated marketing communications, the first decision is to choose the most appropriate channels for your global branding. There are several to choose from, including social media, email marketing, content marketing, and more.
3. Production and logistics
Production for international companies is not easy. Many decisions will need to be made regarding practicalities such as production facilities, manufacturing sites, shipping, storage and warehousing, and distribution. To ensure that your product can be sold in the regions you have in mind, first take into consideration how it will reach the market.
4. Language considerations
Language is a major factor when it comes to selling to an international market that speaks a different language. Will you offer your goods or services in that language? How will the names of your brand and products translate? How many variations of supplementing products (e.g., a safety booklet or terms and conditions) will you require? There are many questions to research before entering a new market.
5. Country-specific regulations
Product restrictions vary between countries, meaning a product that is sold freely in one region might be restricted in another. Once you have decided which countries to target, you will need to research the regulations imposed on your product in the chosen countries.
- Is your offering permitted there?
- Is the sale of your product subject to any limitations?
- Are there specific guidelines for labeling or packaging your products?
- Does your product fall into a tax classification that you know will give you issues?
This is an important step that should not be missed. Once the questions have been answered, you can then start thorough market research and develop an integrated global marketing strategy.
How can Senspoint help?
Expanding a brand globally requires careful consideration of several important elements. Only then can an international marketing campaign be successful.
At Senspoint, we are a full-service creative, strategic, and production agency. If you are considering going global, we are well-equipped to help you develop an integrated global marketing strategy. We work with you every step of the way, working collaboratively to create the best solutions that are specifically tailored to your business.