Multilingual Content Marketing for Beginners

by | Sep 4, 2018

What is your plan to publicize this multilingual content?

We’re going with a horse-cart analogy here.

If you haven’t jumped into multilingual content marketing before, you might think that your content is a horse, and if you translate it, it’s going to pull your cart right into the target market.

But it’s really your marketing team that’s the horse, and they’re going to need a plan for how to pull this content cart into the new market.

Point being, before you ever localize a blog post, you’ve got to have a plan for how to get this localized content in front of your target market! You can’t, for example, just publish something to your blog and expect the right people to magically appear (they might, but you can’t count on it). Horses don’t push carts!

Especially in the case of digital content marketing, you may not be able to use the same social media channels or pages to push multilingual content.

  • For Twitter, you may need to open a new account each language.
  • Facebook and LinkedIn each have their own options, and may not even be used in the target market. For example, in Germany they use XING instead of Linkedin.
  • And, in terms of influencer marketing, you may need to invest in building relationships with influencers in the target market, to help spread the word about your content.
  • If you’re talking print or industry marketing, you may need to create totally new relationships, or evaluate new options.

We’re covering multilingual social media strategies in a separate post, which is coming up soon. But for now, the best we can do is tell you to have a strategy before you actually start localizing content.

Deal with your technical requirements

What we really mean by this is, how are you going to publish multilingual content? If you’re already doing this, then you know how hard and mind-boggling it can be to maintain, for example, multilingual blogs.

Your content management system may have several different ways to translate blog posts and manage a multilingual blog. But ultimately, you should determine what kind of workflow you need before you go about the costly process of setting up your multilingual blog. Some helpful questions to consider include:

  • Are you using separate domains for your different languages?
  • Will you be able to translate every post, or just some of them?
  • Will you write fresh posts specifically dedicated to each target market?

For the record, the current best practice is a) do not use separate domains, b) don’t plan on translating all of your blog posts, and c) you’ll want to build a content team for the local market to produce local-only content.

Build a clearly defined content team

Great multilingual content, especially content that’s written for the target market, may require additional chefs in your kitchen.

We recommend deciding which people have a role in creating content, what their responsibilities are, and what kind of schedule you’re going to operate on.

For example, you may have a sales office in Singapore. What you might do is delegate content responsibilities to them, whether it’s writing, idea creation, or just review. If you have editorial meetings for some of your content, you might pull them into those meetings and get their perspective.

It’s true: Localized content marketing is a lot of work. But since content is king, it’s almost always worth doing. 😉

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