Attracting customers

How to nail your global social media marketing

08 October 2018
5 minute read


Learn the best ways to run a social media campaign that resonates with a worldwide audience.

When it comes to developing a great social media strategy, it’s all about creating content that elicits a particular response from your customers: whether that’s an increased trust and understanding of your brand, or an emotional attachment to your content or story.

However, when it comes to creating a global strategy, marketers need to be conscious to not post the same content for every audience. Instead, with your international customers, businesses need to establish a strategy that is built specifically for different cultures, audiences and platforms in mind.

So, if you’re looking to get started with a global social media strategy but aren’t sure where to begin, we’ve got you covered.

Talk My Language


If your business is accessible to a number of different nations, you’ll need to consider a few different options before you get going. For example, do you want to create a separate social profile for each language and region, or use one account for multiple countries? Be wary that 9 out of 10 European internet users prefer browsing in their own language; so no matter where you’re looking to branch out, take the necessary steps to accommodate this.

If you know your company has a huge growth potential in a country whose language is unfamiliar to your business, why not hire a language professional? Companies such as Intrawelt offer translation services for a range of different applications so, whether you’re looking for translated blog posts you can share worldwide, or want to simply create social ads that speak to specific audience, they can help.

Consider Cultural Differences


All too often, brands seek to engage with their customer socially without having a clear understanding of the critical differences and opportunities that exist across regions and markets. Certain phrases and words can mean different things in different languages, meaning it’s far more difficult than simply translating content word for word. And, if you get it wrong, it could be catastrophic or insulting.

Therefore, making sure that you’re understood by an audience that speaks multiple languages is the key to building a winning global social media strategy. Translation agencies have a wealth of experience in language application, meaning they can help to translate colloquialisms and region specific phrases and sayings, to best target your desired audience and avoid any awkward mishaps!

One Size Doesn't Fit All


Having a single social media strategy for your business often just isn’t enough. In today’s increasingly global market, brands need to consider the different ways in which their target audience communicate, how they use social platforms, what they primarily use them for and, arguably most importantly of all, where they are.

Tools such as Google Analytics allow businesses to gain insightful data about their website traffic giving them access to a range of in-depth information. With the option to drill into specific demographics, such as age, gender and location, via the Audience Insights tab, companies can view information about their target audience. Please bear in mind that you’ll have to update your privacy policy to access this feature; you can read how to do so here.

The Acquisition Insights tab especially provides insights into how your users are finding your site along with how they are responding to your campaigns and which social media channels are driving the most traffic. From this rich data, businesses are then able to make changes to their social media marketing strategies.

While most brands should (ideally) know where their local customers spend most of their time online, it won’t always be the same platform for every location. For example, while Facebook is still the most widely used platform in much of the world - dominating 91% of social media use to be exact - many countries have their own social networks, such as the Chinese Qzone and Youku, and the Russian social network vkontakte; all of which are open to Western brands looking to tap into these global marketplaces.

Instead of blindly choosing a platform and hoping for the best, businesses should do their research before they get going. It’s simple to look into the demographics of the major social networks in your chosen areas with the right tools.

A great way to keep tabs on what your audience is talking about is social listening, enabling the monitoring of online conversations. Using a tool such as Sprout Social will go a huge way towards helping you to analyse your current followers and will provide you with a range of in-depth analysis of your audience. This will help you to decide which social channels are worth utilising, and which aren’t.

Similarly, taking a look at what your competitors are doing, along with what social channels they are on, can help to gain an idea of where your customers might be and will provide you with a foundation from which you can act upon. Helpful online tools, such as Ahrefs and SimilarWeb, offer free accounts where businesses can easily compare traffic, referrals, visitor behaviour and more in an effort to optimise their marketing strategies. After all, if your audience aren’t using certain platforms there’s no point investing your time, effort or money on management or advertising.

Understand Your Platforms’ Capabilities

While some social platforms may be perfect for reaching a local audience, others, such as Facebook, allow businesses to take advantage of a range of different features, such as targeting and segmenting posts by country or language.

To get started with Facebook targeting, businesses can use either paid advertising segmentation, or targeting on organic posts:

Paid Advertising

Paid Ads

To build and manage your Facebook target audiences, businesses will need to log in to the Business Manager tool by clicking on the top right-hand menu and choosing the tab that reads ‘Audiences’.

The easiest way to ensure you reach your target demographic is to create a new audience, which can be defined by interests, location, age, gender and more.

Depending on how specific you want to be from your location targeting, you can further segment your audience based on a number of factors. For instance, everyone in a specific location, people who live in a location, people who were recently in the location and people who are travelling to the location.

Organic Posts

Organic PostsSimilarly, Facebook marketers can also use targeting when posting organically on their profiles, a feature the social platform calls a ‘Preferred Audience’.

When creating an organic post, marketers should click ‘write something’ to open the posting tool, and then click on the button below to ‘choose the preferred audiences for this post’. This brings up options to target posts by interests, age, gender, locations and languages, and can make sure your posts are seen by the right people.

 To put it simply, choosing the right platform for your audience can mean the difference between your posts being seen, and your posts fading into the background. So, remember, when it comes to creating a winning global social media marketing strategy, it’s all about research. From where your customers are to how they communicate and the social channels they use, by learning how your target audience spend their time online, you’ll be able to create a strategy that hits the spot, every time.

About the Author

Intrawelt is a London based company who offer translation and interpreting services to businesses in order to help them to grow into the international market. They work across a range of different industries and can help with anything from copywriting to telephone interpreting, complete document-management and website localisation.

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