Social media is one of the most powerful tools available to business owners looking to expand globally. Investing in professional translation services to aide your transition from generating content in English to developing copy in other languages ensures your sites are both accurate and localized, but there are a few steps your company should take when setting up international social media pages to attract the highest number of online followers.
According to the corporate Facebook site, more than 82 percent of the daily users live in countries outside of the U.S. and Canada. While many users in other countries can navigate pages in English, online visitors are much more likely to interact with your company's pages if they are presented in their native languages. As you're assessing whether your brand needs to make an international page for its consumers, consider the following steps before moving forward.
"More than 82 percent of Facebook users live outside the U.S. and Canada."
Step 1: Know Your Target Audience
Which services will your brand be promoting on social media? Conducting market research about your intended audience, including their desires and location, is imperative before moving forward with generating a global Facebook page. According to the State of the Media: The Social Media Report released by Nielsen in 2012, social media, websites and online product reviews have a significant impact on how people purchase goods. For example, 63 percent of buyers from Asia-Pacific indicated they would base their financial products and banking services based on these online interactions.
Prior to choosing which regions you'd like to target with your social media pages, you need to research which consumers interact most frequently with the products or services you plan to provide.
Step 2: Make an Action Plan
You'll want to set up as many regional pages for your brand as you see fit. Sit down and write out which regions you want to target and how many languages you'll need to be translated before moving forward. As you're setting up the bare bones for each page, you'll want to keep the names similar to avoid confusion among your loyal followers. For example, you may wish to stick with names like, "Brand Name – China," or "Brand Name – India." Once you've got the structure in place, it's time to fill in the content.
Step 3: Invest in the Professionals
Localizing the copy on your social media pages is critical to their success. You want copy to be accurate and engaging, which means you need to trust the professionals in this regard. Use localization services to translate static sections, like welcoming posts, about sections and pertinent consumer information. Facebook has 34 offices outside of the U.S., meaning their international customer service representatives can assist professional translation services with concerns that may arise during the process.
"Facebook has 34 different offices outside the U.S."
Using localization services to generate content for your Facebook page is also crucial for ensuring any features – like time, location or design associated with user experience – are catered toward the region at hand. Each of these additions may further inspire people to interact with your online presence.
Step 4: Keep Posts Persistent
Developing Facebook pages for individual regions is one thing, but keeping them updated on a regular basis is another entirely. You'll need to keep track of which pages you're updating regularly, noting issues that resonate most with followers and may further engage them to purchase. Recognizing that international brands were required to manage multiple internationally facing sites, Facebook created a Global Pages feature for companies to streamline the way they manage and post to different sites.