Marketing your business in Europe
Expanding your business into the highly competitive European eCommerce market can bring many challenges as well as the potential of reaping great rewards. For example, there are a number of challenges that do not exist when marketing in the UK alone and understanding these differences can help you achieve success.
F4E can assist you with an effective marketing strategy to help create a strong, targeted European customer base.
Understand European marketing practices
At F4E we have the on-the-ground expertise that understand your customer base and the marketing practices of each home European country. For many businesses, distance selling is a good option when expanding into another country. The supply of goods and services from one EU country to another is made simple with F4E as you have one point of contact and our integrated systems can allocate or transfer stock from one European customer base to another to meet the demand in each of your target locations.
Distance selling is covered by specific EU regulations that also cover your marketing strategy. Distance marketing can include press advertising, online and email marketing.
Research Your Market
Making sure that customers are aware of and understand the benefits of your products or services is vital and successful, well-researched marketing campaigns can make all the difference between success and failure. This is even more important when operating in another country - as you will have to consider other factors, like:
cultural differences - ideas that appeal in your home market may not work Europe
language barriers - getting your brand’s tone of voice and key messages over in your target European languages is vital
customer trust - if you are new to the European market, you may have to work harder to build trust with customers and brand credibility
legal implications – understand the different advertising and marketing laws and restrictions in some countries, with potential fines
Positioning your products for European markets
Once you have selected your range, you should then consider the image you want to present for your products or services. You may already have a well-established brand - including name, trademarks, logos and more - but you should still analyse if these will translate well into your new market.
Product photography is an essential part of both online and offline advertising for successful catalogues, brochures, magazine ads, billboards, online ads and company websites, specifically when selling products direct to consumer.
Images shape their first impression, creating a tipping point as to whether they will continue browsing and eventually make a purchase.
In many locations F4E have photographic and design studios that can help to bring your product to life.
Digital marketing in Europe
Your business website is the public face of your business and is a very effective marketing tool. You should manage it carefully and use it to its full potential.
For most small businesses the internet is by far the most powerful marketing tool available. You can connect with customers worldwide for free or at very little cost. You also have the ability to sell directly online, gather customer feedback and monitor customer usage - all invaluable for any marketing campaign.
If you are planning to expand your business into Europe or you are ready to reach a wider European audience then a good share of your website visitors will come from a different country than where you're located. They will speak different languages, have a different currency and will be triggered by different keywords and calls to action.
F4E can advise and assist you to make some changes to your existing website to create a better experience for all of your international visitors.
Good organic search listings in each of your target country’s search engines is vital. If you are familiar with SEO in your home country then simply think of international SEO as geotargeting, but instead of optimizing your website to attract traffic from your city or state, you're optimizing it for different countries and languages.
If you're looking to start from scratch and create a completely internationalized site (i.e., one that specifically targets a different country and a different language), F4E can help to design and build fully integrated ecommerce websites with SEO content which will:
Specify your target country and/or region with an international-friendly URL structure (country targeting).
Establish which language your pages are targeting with the use of language tags (language targeting).
Create and maintain content in your target users' language(s). These are the raw materials with which you'll actually rank.
Sometimes, you may be only looking to target a specific language or a specific country. In these cases, you may only want to work towards one or two of those three goals.
Marketing 4 Europe - key points
- Understand European marketing practices
- Research your market
- Position your products for European markets
- Digital marketing including SEO, country targeting and language targeting
F4E have in-house expertise and leading expert partners that can help you achieve your ambitions in Europe.