Engage, don’t broadcastUnited midfielder Juan Mata has endeared himself to fans the world over with his multilingual blog posts talking about recent performances and other things he’s been up to and is signed off “Hugs, Juan”. You won’t be surprised to learn that his dedicated Chinese language blog has won local hearts too. Localisation means more than just a straight translation of your English language materials for a Chinese audience. Time spent understanding your target demographics and early adopters and making an effort to engage with them on their terms is a very worthwhile investment. And with social listening you can get helpful feedback without even setting foot in the country. For example, WeChat, China’s biggest social media platform, has an Index feature that allows you to see how many people are using certain keywords associated with your product or company.
Partner upLast year Manchester United began a long-term partnership with Sina Sports, China’s largest digital sports media platform, giving them exclusive rights to its TV channel MUTV. Even a world-famous sports brand can’t do it all alone – from marketing to logistics, finding the right domestic partners can help you to get a solid foothold as you benefit from their local knowledge and contacts.
Be patientLaunching a product or service nationally in a small country like the UK is relatively straight forward. But, much like in the world of sport, overnight success in China is rare. The sheer geographical size and diversity of China mean that you have to be in it for the long haul, both in terms of recruiting a knowledgeable local team and being patient in waiting for demand to mature. The latter is especially important if you are introducing a relatively new concept or product type – you may have to think creatively to shape new trends and influence tastes. One final tip – be nice! When it comes to building your business success in China, try to be a Manchester United, not a Chelsea, and certainly not a Kenedy! Arnold Ma is CEO of China-focused digital marketing agency Qumin [rb_inline_related]
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