Marketing Planning | 3 min. read

Making the move from global to multi-local

Written by Mike Nield, 03.06.2017

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Despite, or perhaps because of, our sprawling modern digital economy, which has seen the erosion of traditional trade barriers and boundaries, in some fields customers have had enough of dealing with offshore call centres, mass sorting hubs and anonymous strangers. Instead, they are putting increasing value on relationships that feel more local, more personal and more geared to their very individual requirements.

Presenting at a TED Talk a couple of years ago, writer Taiye Selasi said: “Don’t ask where I’m from, ask where I’m a local”, which rejected the apparent ideal of one globalised culture that we should all be aspiring to. This sentiment should resonate with managers everywhere, who are trying to reconcile the need to operate in a global market while capitalising on local service provision. Your global strategy may appear to be driving efficiency by achieving great economies of scale but you may be sacrificing potential responsiveness to local requirements and losing out as a result.

Luckily, you are no longer faced with a binary choice between either a global or a regional market. Instead, the option to employ a multi-local strategy is growing in popularity and some of the biggest brands are shifting their business models accordingly. Now is the time for you to be thinking strategically too. Your customers are the most important people to your business, are you still meeting their expectations, whichever region or country you are operating in? How much time and energy are you spending on assessing how your customers’ needs have changed and is your operation evolving accordingly? At the same time, is there a risk that in serving at a multi-local level you are forgetting the importance of maintaining consistent brand identity and messages across every market?

Whatever the size and scale of your business, you should consider how to position your brand with a multi-local mindset and then devise a strategic marketing plan to underpin it and give it maximum stand out.

Want to do this effectively? Talk to Intermedia.

Originally published June 3, 2017 16:23pm, updated December 20, 2019

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