Having been involved in localization for over four years and with a singular eye on globalization for many more, I have witnessed one constant: if your revenue stream is broken, you can help fix it by implementing an effective overseas strategy; and with the US and Europe floundering and most growth these days happening in emerging markets, it makes sense to focus on the latter. While there are exciting opportunities in many emerging markets, for the purposes of my first blog entry, we will stick to the big four, Brazil, Russia, India, China, aka BRIC.
Here is a breakdown of why these key emerging markets may make sense to your organization:
Brazil: With its strength in natural resources and a young middle class, many have predicted that the largest market in South America will eventually outperform all emerging markets. Low public debt, rational interest rates and high savings rates coupled with their independence on foreign sources of energy and food give Brazil a healthy platform for stability even during times of high oil prices.
“Brazil is a great long-term opportunity on many different fronts.”
Source: Yiannis Mostrous, Global Investment Strategist
Russia: The country is highly industrialized and with a richness in natural resources. Its rise in domestic consumption has coincided with a steady wage increase since 1999. Overall, there has been a retail boom in recent years, though it remains in its infancy. It also has the largest population in Europe. When you put all these factors together, you come up with infinite possibilities, especially long term.
India: Trailing only China in economic growth. India’s manufacturing, service sector and information technology outsourcing continue to be the main factors behind a 7% growth rate since 1997. Additionally, compared to China, consumer spending on imported goods has increased dramatically as India still buys more from the rest of the world than it sells, opening the door for great opportunities for foreign firms .
China: The most obvious emerging market has recently become the second largest economy in the world as it ousted Japan from that slot. Rapid rises in manufacturing, automotive, textile, energy and technology industries make it extremely apparent that if your business is not already in China, your competitors probably are. China continues to show evolution in its approach as it explores opportunities in intra-BRIC trade as well:
“Domestic consumption is also a key driver of intra-Bric market trade. The BRIC markets are no longer as heavily dependent on the developed world. For example, Brazil’s biggest trading partner is no longer the US but China.”
Source: ‘Emerging markets: From Russia with Love” by Lee Boyce
Bottom line: emerging markets, due to their need for new technologies, their ever-expanding middle class and their financial gains from a steady rise in trade, have experienced an escalation of growth not usually available in mature, more developed economies. Reason enough to explore that area of the world most suitable to your corporate strategy.
So the next question is, well, how do I get started? What are my risks? And how do I get there?
It is very easy for me to say translation/localization is the key, given my position at EC Innovations, and certainly this statistic proves that it is probably a good place to begin:
“A 2007 Paper by LISA (Localization Industry Standards Association), reported that $25 was returned for every $1 invested in localization.”
Source: Helzer, Aaron, “Localizing for software, websites and global apps.” April/May 2011 Issue, MultiLingual
But be mindful that there is a lot more to the recipe than preparing your products and services for a target audience. Here are some additional considerations when considering new areas for development:
- Distribution Channels
- Competitive landscape
- Regulations specific to your target market
- SEO /SEM (Search Engine Optimization/Search Engine Marketing).
Once you are ready to take the plunge into BRIC or any other new international market, contact us and let us help you navigate with confidence.
Empowering Communications globally since 1997, EC Innovations can lead you to the rest of the world:
- Quality language solutions at highly competitive prices
- Expertise in website, user-assistance and software localization
- Marketing translation, transcreation and transadaptation capabilities
- Multimedia and eLearning translation and production services
- TBMS, a business intelligence & translation workflow management system that can interface directly with your Content Management System
- An innovative, customized approach to streamline your translation initiatives