With the advent of better Internet connectivity through networks like 5G and increasing global business after the recent slowdowns, international email marketing is the best channel for getting in touch with your overseas clients and prospects. It drives the best-in-class ROI sitting at 4400%, and it is the top-rated channel for marketers.
However, if you communicate with overseas clients, you need to bear a few things in your mind to avoid any misinterpretations and awkward moments.
Maintaining decency across diversity norms is a big challenge for email developers and copywriters. To help my fellow marketers, I will list down things that you should bear in mind while sending messages to your overseas clients. Dive in deeper to know more.
Understand Their English Proficiency
Remember that English is not the first language of all your customers. A few of them might be good at it, but it is not wise to use a world-heavy copy. English could be difficult to learn for certain audiences, and the varying competence level should be kept in mind while developing the email copy. While carrying out the personalization efforts, it is necessary to use relevant English to make your message accessible to your readers.
In many countries, English is a part of education as a primary or secondary language. However, it would be best if you still researched your target customer base’s proficiency level.
Imagine, for example. You are working with a clinic in Australia that does egg freezing. You will be okay to work with the same email as the US. This won’t happen in Brazil, where, although some people know English, it will be better to use the term congelamento de óvulos, in Portuguese, to have 100% of understanding.
Also, check if the words you use have more than one meaning. In such cases, it is necessary to review the context. I recommend using short sentences and only general-purpose words to write your copies. This reduces the scope of creating confusion or unwanted intricacies. Keep humor, sarcasm, metaphors, slang, and idioms at bay. This will help you create far better copies as long as overseas clients are concerned. Here’s a short yet effective email copy:
Check For Cultural Differences And Get A Professional Translator If Needed
It is completely okay to be informal in many cultures and ask about the recipient’s family as a courtesy. On the other hand, it isn’t very respectful in some cultures. Conduct thorough research on the local culture if you are going to communicate extensively. Spending at least half an hour before developing the email copy must ensure that no glitch occurs due to misinformation. You should avoid using translation through software solutions as they cannot manage cultural differences.
Getting a local guide who has bilingual proficiency is worth the investment. You can also outsource your marketing efforts to an email marketing agency as they have offices in multiple nations, giving them access to a wider talent pool. Cultural differences can create barriers in communicating as they put your business at stake without necessarily being informed about it.
Be Picky With Images
We might think that nothing could go wrong with images, but they have a lot to do in the case of cross-cultural communication. For instance, if you send a message to your Japanese client on the occasion of a traditional Japanese festival, using stock images could easily backfire since they mostly have white people in a western backdrop. In such cases, it will only confuse your subscribers and reduce your credibility as a business. Also, don’t use images with embedded captions.
Postures and body language also hold different meanings in different cultures, like words. Even using images of buildings and celebrations should be done cautiously to avoid hurting people’s sentiments. I also recommend using alt text in the local language to serve the purpose better instead of further frustrating your clients when images don’t load. Imagine using an English teacup in the below emailer for Japaneses. Wouldn’t that look weird to them?
Look Out For Anti-Spam Laws And Use Responsive HTML Email Templates
Anti-spam laws are important considerations before sending emails to any country. For instance, it is mandatory to include an opt-out option for promotional messages sent to the EU. Simultaneously, you need to use opt-in for most countries, but France and Finland don’t require you to do so if your message is relevant for the recipient’s job profile. The legal implications of breaching anti-spam laws can be a really costly affair as the amount can reach up to even millions of dollars.
Responsive HTML email templates are fast becoming normal as they allow you to display content blocks as required. They also help optimize your messages for mobile users, an extremely beneficial feature for limited bandwidth and latency regions. These templates render flawlessly across all device types and OS, allowing you to standardize communication with broader audiences.
Over To You
Throughout this article, I have covered some of the most gullible areas that anyone would overlook in normal conditions. Optimizing your sending time and using a CRM is a must. Keeping these things in mind will help stay relevant to your overseas clients without risking your reputation and business.
Minimizing the possible fault areas is a much better strategy than overworking your emails to achieve perfection. Playing safe is undoubtedly the best way to deal with such situations, and you can always improve as you learn more about your clients. I hope you find this article on sending emails to overseas clients helpful for your next campaign.
About Our Guest Contributor
Kevin George is Head of Marketing at Email Uplers, one of the fastest-growing full-service email marketing agency that specializes in crafting professional email templates, PSD to HTML email conversion, and HTML email templates development in addition to providing email automation, campaign management, and data integration & migration services.
He loves gadgets, bikes, jazz, and eats and breathes email marketing. He enjoys sharing his insights and thoughts on email marketing best practices on his blog.