York, United Kingdom (PressExposure) October 10, 2009 -- Many marketers who are used to dealing with a single market are unaware of the essential questions they need to ask when appointing an agency to run international campaigns. This can lead to choosing companies who are not fully up to the task in hand and lead to dangerous / costly mistakes - such as using keywords that have simply been translated rather than researched in the target language.
As head of an international search marketing agency, Andy Atkins-KrÃ¼ger has experienced some of the mistakes made by clients who haven't considered the implications of running international campaigns and in an article on Search Engine Watch, he recommends some essential questions that all organisations should put to their prospective suppliers
The most important things to find out include:
Who will undertake the international work? Whether it be partner agencies, satellite offices or an in-house team, you need to be sure you are aware of all the parties involved, their experience and their communication channels.
Will those working on my account be native speakers of the languages involved? You need to be sure that native speakers, who have an intuitive knowledge of the language, are working on your projects otherwise accuracy and effectiveness may be compromised
My site will need translating. How will this be done? Any translated website body content that needs to translated must be SEO-friendly, or at least undergo an SEO review - translations won't include keywords by default
Andy says, "Many organisations assume that if an agency has offices across the world, or a long list of languages on their website that they will be able to easily and effectively manage international search campaigns, however this is not always the case.
"Global search marketing campaigns are naturally complex, due to dealing with multiple time zones, cultures, languages, laws, search engines...the list goes on. So having confidence in the experience and competence of your chosen international agency is essential to ensure your entry into the global online arena is both profitable and painless."
Andy also emphasises the importance of clearly defining the aims and objectives of the international activity internally before even approaching any agencies, as this will help you determine what you need from a vendor and guide the questions that you ask.