Kelsey Rausch - Marketing Manager
Global Brands That Nailed Localization in Different Markets: Part 1
Localization is the process of adapting a product or service to meet the cultural, linguistic, and other requirements of a specific market. Effective localization can be the key to the success of global brands, as it allows them to connect with local customers in a particular way that resonates with them, no matter where they are in the world.
In this series, we'll look at some large global brands that have done localization well.
As one of the most recognizable brands in the world, McDonald's is a prime example of a global brand that has adapted to local markets. This fast-food giant has restaurants in over 100 countries and territories, and while McDonald’s serves burgers and fries worldwide, they have made significant changes to their menus to cater to local tastes.
For example, in India, McDonald's serves the McAloo Tikki burger, which is made with a spiced potato and pea patty, as beef is not commonly eaten due to religious reasons. In Japan, McDonald's serves the Teriyaki Burger and Shrimp Filet-O burgers, which are unavailable in other countries. The company also adapts its menu to different dietary restrictions in different countries, such as offering halal meat in Muslim-majority countries.
Coca-Cola is another global brand that has adapted to local markets. The company has customized its marketing campaigns and packaging to appeal to local customers.
For example, in China, Coca-Cola launched a campaign that used the phrase "Taste the Feeling" in Chinese characters with special cultural significance. Coca-Cola has also adapted its flavors to local tastes, such as:
The bitter-tasting soda "Beverly Hills" flavor in Italy,
Fanta Melon Cream Soda in Japan
Fanta Pineapple in Brazil
Coca-Cola has also used local cultural events to promote its products, such as the Holi festival of colors in India, where the company launched a limited-edition bottle featuring colorful Holi designs.
IKEA is a furniture retailer known for its minimalist designs and affordable prices. IKEA is a Swedish furniture company with stores in over 50 countries. The company has done an excellent job of localizing its products to meet the needs of different markets.
In the United Arab Emirates, IKEA launched a campaign that showed its products in local homes to show how they could be integrated into local cultures. In Japan, IKEA's catalog featured products that were smaller and more compact, as Japanese homes are typically smaller than those in other countries. The company also adapts its products to local tastes, such as offering lower beds in Japan, where traditional futons are more commonly used. And in Saudi Arabia, the company has separate sections for men and women to shop comfortably, reflecting the cultural norms of the country.
These three brands are just a few examples of global brands that have successfully localized their products and services to meet the needs and preferences of different markets. By doing so, they have been able to build strong connections with customers around the world and establish themselves as trusted and respected brands.
Stay tuned for our next post in this series!