Our world is a moving globe. Being a global company in this kind of world isn’t easy at all. Many companies don’t have the resources to be physically present in every market area, and they have to rely on international communication. Although it is relatively easy to translate a piece of text from one language to another, language translation is rarely enough. It doesn’t matter if the message is correctly translated if the message itself is wrong.
It is so simple to start up an online business and open the doors to the world. Social media and other forums are full of potential customers. International communication and marketing have never been easier or cheaper. However, it’s surprisingly challenging to step out of your own point of view. Here are some things you may haven’t thought about when communicating internationally:
- When you have winter with snow and frost, someone else is enjoying summer with the sun and heat.
- When you are eating breakfast, someone else is going to sleep.
- When you are celebrating Christmas, others have Hanukkah or Saint Nicholas or none of these.
- When you are working, others may have holidays.
- When you are enjoying a national holiday, others may be working.
- When you are in the year of 2014, others may follow a different calendar.
- When you use an exclamation mark, someone may think you are aggressive.
- And so on… (This list is never ending.)
Due to these things, there is a possibility that your friendly greeting may not receive all positive responses. An international audience is a challenge especially in social media. Time and relevancy are important elements in social media. The average lifespan of a tweet is probably closer to minutes than hours. Thus, it’s not easy to hit the right moment to get the best possible international audience to the message by accident. The key is to choose the audience and to target the message to the right people.
Do you know some other situations or things to consider when communicating internationally?
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