Tactics for Promoting Content Across Regions
If you ask any writers or musicians, they will tell you that promoting their work is harder than creating it. I second that!
Compelling content is only half the battle; the other half is to publish it where your target audience can discover it. Promoting content across regions adds another layer of complexity and makes the overall effort even more challenging.
Depending on your objectives, budget, and resources, your global promotional tactics may differ from region to region and country to country. E-mail may be the most effective way to reach your audience in the US, but events may be the best way to go in China. For new markets, you need to experiment with different promotional tactics to determine an optimal mix of marketing channels.
Regardless of the promotional tactics, global content marketing promotion needs collaboration between the headquarters and the local teams or, for smaller companies, coordination with local agencies. Once the headquarters and local teams align on objectives, budget, audience and resource, the next step is to determine who will take the lead on different promotional tactics.
Here are several examples of promotional tactics:
Before content is completed, keywords and phrases should be properly researched and aligned with topics and company products. In general, content creators should deliver finished content in source files with a list of keywords. The local team or agency will be responsible for localizing or translating the results.
Some companies centralize all ad-word buys within the headquarters, while others let each country manage its own ad-word buys. There is no right or wrong way to do it. You will need to conduct a cost analysis and take into account the resources needs on the ground.
Some companies’ web teams take a centralized approach and go as far as creating local websites and providing copy and photo stock. At a minimal level, the headquarters team should provide several web templates so the local teams can choose one that works best for them.
As long as the local teams stay with the branding guidelines, it’s OK to let them have the freedom to customize and localize website images and copy. Website design and management can use either a centralized or decentralized approach. Talk to your local teams to understand their needs, then determine the best approach.
Blogging takes a lot of time and effort; not all local teams can afford to blog in a sustained manner, even if the local teams hire freelancers to do it. Blogs almost always need to be created locally or translated locally in order to build an emotional connection with local audiences.
Depending on company size and international presence, social media in different countries can be covered by the staff at the headquarters, if appropriate tools and process are set up. However, it’s most effective for social media campaigns to be led and owned by the local teams or agencies. Use local social media channels with local languages in local contexts.
Sometimes, big enterprises have their own proprietary events across regions (Intel Developer Forum, HP Discover, SAP Sapphire etc.); these events tend to be led by the corporate team. For cross-regional event sponsorship, corporate should take the lead to negotiate multi-region contracts. In general, the local teams should take the lead to determine the appropriate local events in which to engage.
In my book, Global Content Marketing, I discuss additional promotional tactics on how to better collaborate between corporate and local teams. You can also find free supplemental tools and templates on globalcontent.marketing.