Overcoming the Language Barrier for Global Business Expansion

In this world of fierce competition, if you want to stand ahead, global expansion is the key. Tapping into international markets and expanding your reach can help you get global recognition and add to your brand image if you approach the target markets in the right way.

An international survey has suggested that people tend to buy those products that are in their native language. Besides language barriers, it is also important to consider cultural, financial, and legal considerations so that you can easily penetrate into the foreign market. If you are able to communicate with your global clients in their language, you can easily make your name in the global market. 

Is Your Business Capable of Reaching a Global Market?

All businesses are not capable of reaching the global market, so before committing your time and money, you need to know whether it is worthwhile to go global. 

These questions need to be answered:

Is your product and service in demand?

Will you be able to deliver a high level of satisfaction?

Is your brand globally identified?

Do you have sufficient money to start your business?

Can you manage overseas business operations?

If the answer to these questions is yes, then you are ready for the global endeavor. You have a solid base for your business and your business is ready for growth. You just need to make a clear business strategy for your expansion after doing thorough research.

Selection of Target Markets

A global market is a big place with a combination of multiple languages and a pool of opportunities. You cannot indulge in every single market. It is better to conduct thorough research on each potential market so that you can put your energies in the right direction. You should know your existing market and customer base. It will help you in channelizing your resources rationally. For instance, you should know the demographics of your customers, salary range, age, and their buying behavior. It is also necessary to know about your competitor.

If any brand is already penetrated in the market then you need to think twice before entering that market. Moreover, if you find any gap in the market, then your research can help in identifying it and devising a strategy for global expansion.

Identify Preferred Languages of Your Target Market 

Different languages are spoken around the world. For example, there are 11 languages spoken in South Africa, India has 22 official languages, Singapore and Switzerland have 4 official languages and in Canada, two official languages are used. If you know the languages that are used in the market then you will be able to use phrases and begin effective marketing in the customer’s local language. It will show your respect and concern about the local customers and language.

Break the Language Barrier

Language is the foremost barrier to enter a foreign market and it should not be ignored in any case. If you are not communicating with the customers in their native language then you are limiting the scope of attracting potential customers from across the borders. In case you are tapping into a foreign market, hire a consultant that is native to that country. You can also add a person from that target country in your team so that he can guide you about cultural and linguistic nuances and you can communicate with the locals well. All your product information and marketing material should be professionally translated.

Conduct Surveys

You need to conduct a survey to avoid mistakes in the foreign market. You can also take feedback from customers through online surveys so that you can cater to them as per their requirements.  In this way, you can understand the consumer behavior of your target market. 

Translation of Official Documents

After hiring the employees, translate all your office documents in the native language of your target market. This will help you in communicating with your employees effectively. You can do this by using free online tools or you can hire a reliable translation company. When employees are clearly instructed about their job descriptions in their native language then they work hard towards attaining the organizational goal.

Use of Technology

Google translate is one of the best innovative resources to remove language barriers because it is basic and user friendly. The additional feature that helps in removing the communication barrier is that it offers pronunciation of phrases or words. Other technologies for translation include Prompt, Quest Visual, and Bing Translator.

Take the Assistance of Interpreter

Find someone that can help your business team to get feedback in their local language. It will help in reducing miscommunication. If your business team is not fluent in the target language then you can take the assistance of an interpreter through the American Translators Association or the federation of translators. You can also find a local interpreter from your community.

Using Visuals

Visuals are great communication tools. It helps in mitigating communication barriers so you can use pictures to convey your message, assignments, or instructions. But, make sure that cue cards, signs, and other visual aids are according to the cultural and regional nuance. Otherwise, they will fire back. 

Don’t Use Idioms, Jargon and Slang Words

If you are following the native language then avoid using the idioms, Jargon, and slang words that are not recognized in the target market. Speak and communicate clearly so that global clients can understand you.

Understand the Basics

Entrepreneurs cannot learn every language but they can learn the basics of the language of the target market like warnings, work phrases, and greetings. If your business team understands the basics of the native language then it will help them in knowing the dynamics of the target market. 

Wrapping Up

You will come across many linguistic, cultural, and regional nuances in global business dealings. To avoid these problems, you need to take the assistance of a reliable translation company. It will help you in seamless communication with global employees and customers and keep employees, management, and customers on the same page to facilitate your global growth.

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