Are you Glocal? How global localisation became a growing focus area for retailers
Localisation is a powerful tool for any business, particularly large global companies. Giving you the ability to connect with local customers, to tailor your products and engage with local communities, localisation is the key to strong performance in locations around the world.
We’ve covered the benefits of localisation in previous blog posts, and shared tips for getting started. Today, we’re going to take a look at some major success stories from around the world - brands which have taken localisation to heart and seen the benefits it can bring.
McDonald’s - Catering To Local Tastes
McDonald’s has a long history of localised advertising - shooting video adverts in location-relevant places and using actors and voiceover artists from the country the advert shows in.
But beyond advertising, McDonald’s also famously localises its menu. From the McLobster in Canada to the Maharaja Mac in India, the McDonald’s menu changes around the world to suit local tastes and customs.
Menu localisation is a good tactic for fast food businesses and other restaurants. Not only does it show sensitivity towards local customs - some cultures or religions don’t eat certain foods, for example - but it can also help to boost sales by appealing to local tastes.
Starbucks - Localised Cafe Design
Starbucks is one of the best-known coffee shops in the world, with more than 27,000 stores in 75 countries worldwide. But despite the core brand’s popularity, Starbucks has experimented with localising its image with a small number of so-called “stealth Starbucks” stores.
Designed to look like local independent coffee shops, these ‘stealth’ cafes hold no Starbucks branding at all, instead taking a unique name with customised branding and decor.
According to former CEO Howard Schultz, these undercover stores act as a ‘laboratory’ for the brand and a place where Starbucks can test out new branding and the effect that localisation can have on customers. The stores enable Starbucks to move away from their traditional worldwide branding to something that fits each store’s location better, allowing them to blend in with the local community.
Disneyland - Redesigning A Classic
Localisation can be practised by practically any brand, not just restaurants and cafes.
In 2005, Disneyland Hong Kong opened its doors to visitors and, despite the brand’s worldwide popularity, soon found itself struggling with low numbers of guests.
In response to its poor performance, Disneyland Hong Kong decided to reassess its theme park and other attractions to make them more suitable for its local Chinese audience. By changing the park design and the attractions on offer to suit local tastes, altering the prices to suit local budgets, and even taking local customs like feng shui into account, the park was able to significantly boost its appeal and bring in more customers than ever before.
Coca Cola - Global Brand Ambassadors
Coca Cola has long been a great example of what can be achieved through localisation of a global brand.
In this blog post, we took a look at how the “Share A Coke” campaign took the world by storm. Making use of local names, the campaign was able to move from its original audience in Australia to practically every market in the world with great effect.
Coke is also good at using brand ambassadors to sell its products. By picking from local celebrities for its advertisements and sponsorship deals, Coca Cola is able to reach a large and relevant local audience in locations around the world. Coke also sponsors local events around the world to achieve the same, attaching its name to good causes and well-known events across the globe.