A successful plan for expanding into a new country doesn’t have to be complicated, but it needs quantitative and qualitative data. You need in-depth local market research to have a correct understanding of your new target audience.
Numbers alone can’t accurately show where the business opportunities are in a local market or how you can capture the buyers’ attention. You need to talk to your potential clients, listen to their pain points, and understand what they expect.
This way, when you start localizing your website, products and services, and marketing strategy, you’ll know what to deliver to secure successful outcomes. Let’s see what you should consider when conducting marketing research into a local market.
1. Gathering Information About Your Target Public
The initial data you obtain when pushing a product into a local market is mostly based on what early adopters do. It’s a starting point but doesn’t reflect the realities of the local market. So, building a localization strategy exclusively on this can only slow down your growth. If you misinterpret the signs, you can place your local presence at risk by launching a product that’s not appealing enough or too expensive for average potential clients.
So, in your local market research, make sure you learn everything about your target audience. You should have clear answers to the following questions:
- Do locals have the same problem as your current clients? At first glance, it may seem like all people and companies have the same issues and look for similar ways out when encountering an obstacle. However, people with different cultural backgrounds tend to evaluate matters differently and to look for alternative solutions, so you should pay attention to nuances when analyzing locals’ goals and methods to achieve them.
- What products/services in your niche do locals currently use? This helps you position your brand on the market.
- Where do people learn about your type of product? Knowing where people look for information can help you build an effective marketing strategy. You’ll find suitable communication channels to connect with potential clients and create content that people are likely to trust and consume.
- Are locals familiar with your product? It’s vital to know whether people have heard about your brand before. Any previous experience with your products and services can influence people’s perception of your company.
Learning About Competitors
Any local market research should dedicate some time to competitors, both domestic and international. Again, you want the facts behind the numbers. So, besides looking into a competitor’s market share and revenue, try to figure out why people have chosen them and how local buyers see every brand.
Conduct research to find out:
- What differentiates your brand from competitors? The trick is to use cultural insights to answer this question. What makes you different from other companies in your country may not even matter to an international audience. Look for those details that are likely to trigger a reaction among people with different buying habits. Authenticity is crucial in business, but you need to show what makes you special in a way that resonates with potential buyers in their native language.
- What other international brands in your industry have launched in the target market? Spying on your competitors can show you what to do to be successful in local markets. At the same time, it gives you valuable clues about what not to do when expanding into specific countries.
- Are there any local partners you could work with? When analyzing competitors, keep an open eye on possible partnerships with complementary brands. Collaboration with an established business can help you win popularity through association thus gaining people’s trust.
3. Researching Prices and Packaging Options
While learning more about the local market, don’t forget to ask questions about prices and packaging. If you want to make an excellent first impression, you need to make sure that these two elements won’t negatively impact your audience.
When conducting local market research, find answers to the following questions:
- Is your packaging appealing enough for the local market? Consider the visual impact and how a local buyer would react to your packaging. Remember that colors have different meanings across cultures, so you may have to come up with a brand new concept to be successful. Also, try to identify what types of messages you should list on your packaging to build trust and capture attention. This way, when you start translating content, linguists know what terms to use in translation.
- Do you need a localized pricing strategy to attract local buyers? Price is an important component of any expansion strategy. Sometimes, it’s not even about how much people can afford to spend, but mostly how much they expect a particular product to cost.
- Will you need to implement local payment methods? When talking with potential clients about how much they would be willing to spend to solve their problems, ask them how they prefer to pay for services. See if you can find patterns that justify integrating local payment methods into your current systems.
4. Translating Local Market Research
When conducting local market research, you’ll have to translate surveys and their results. Work with professional linguists to make sure that no information gathered from potential buyers is lost in translation. Otherwise, you risk wasting resources and not getting the full picture of the local market.
Translating market research is a tricky niche. You want to work with a team of translators who can deliver your study results in the correct context. They should include cultural references to correctly interpret the information you receive and make the right decisions for your business.
When targeting local markets, the first thing to do is understand who the new customers are. Before starting translation projects, you should know what’s behind the data that you’ve gathered. Local market research gives you an accurate image of what awaits you in a new country and can help you reshape your global strategy to ensure growth.