How to Expand Beyond the Middle East with High-Quality English Content
As a successful Middle Eastern company seeking to expand your marketing efforts internationally, you know that content marketing is critical to introduce your brand globally and connect with new customers worldwide.
In a survey of Middle Eastern marketers, 69 percent reported that they consider content marketing to be “very important,” and 60 percent said they expected to increase their content marketing budgets in the following year. In addition, 31 percent expected content marketing to account for half of their digital budget.
But what’s the best way to make your content marketing campaigns effective internationally? The answer is English. But just any old English won’t do.
If you want to make your company into a successful global business, having high-quality content in the common language of business and international commerce is essential. Here are four reasons why sourcing high-quality English content makes a difference.
1. English is the most common international language
If you stroll through the streets of Dubai, you’re likely to overhear conversations in Hindi, Urdu, and Bengali, just to name a few. And, of course, there’s Arabic, the official language of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). But English is the language you’ll hear more than any other. That’s because an astonishing 1.75 billion people worldwide speak English at a useful level. The Harvard Business Review notes that it’s the fastest-spreading language ever, now spoken by one in every four people. Most importantly for businesses, English is the language used by 55.5 percent of the most-visited websites, and an estimated 565 million people use it on the Internet.
Because so many people speak English as a second or third language, it’s the language that allows people from many different nations to find common ground. That’s why many multinational businesses, including Nokia, Honda, and Airbus, have chosen English as their official corporate language across national boundaries.
2. High-quality content doesn’t have translation problems
Although many apps and software packages will translate your Arabic content into English, robot-translated writing almost always falls short. In addition to sounding, well, robotic, these translations lack the nuances of normal language. Whether it’s the wrong word choice, incorrect sentence structure, or a mangled expression, native speakers will immediately pick up that something in the text is off. Translation programs are unable to imitate the aspects of language that make communication really effective — inflection, idioms, and humor. The consequences of not having high-quality English-language marketing content can be substantial for your business. Marketing text filled with mistakes is not only embarrassing, it may also make your customers think that your products and customer service suffer from the same lack of attention to detail.
3. High-quality content avoids cultural blunders
Presenting marketing content that is in perfect English isn’t the end of the story. Savvy businesses must also keep the many cultural differences between Middle Eastern and English-speaking countries in mind when planning global marketing strategy. What’s polite or acceptable in one culture may give offense or create a negative impression in another.
Important cultural differences even exist between English-speaking countries. The top eight English-speaking countries, listed in descending order, are: United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Nigeria, Ireland, South Africa, and New Zealand. That’s quite a range of cultures, ethnicities, religions, and business environments.
When creating content marketing for customers in other countries, there’s a constant risk of hitting a sour note that will make it more difficult to engage them in a way that will make them want to have a relationship with your business. A smart, multinational content marketing campaign lets you appeal to customers in all of these different cultures in ways that are distinct and particular.
4. High-quality content is optimized for country-to-country SEO
If you want English-speaking customers to find your content online, you have to make sure your website is structured in a way that search engines like Google understand. Keywords are an important factor in search engine optimization (SEO), so you want to make sure that you use the same English-language keywords in your content that your global customers will use in their searches.
Because word-for-word translation is often difficult, if not impossible, keywords in Arabic or another language may not have direct counterparts in English. You might also discover that common phrases in your language may not translate well into English. Maximizing your SEO requires an understanding of the subtleties of translation and how that affects the words your customers use for their searches. Professional content writers understand these nuances and help you to create content that your target audiences can find.
If you’re going to market to customers in English, you need someone who can write English content effectively. You need a writer who understands what you do, what you’re trying to accomplish, and who you’re trying to reach. Prose Media can help. Sign up for free access to our platform to learn more about how our professional writers and editors can help you produce top-notch English content that’s sure to build your global brand.