Content marketing is the hottest tool in the toolbox right now. In fact, 75% of businesses increased content marketing investment in 2016, according to Curata. That’s old news, right?
Except, you might be missing a trick if you’re only focussed on English content marketing.
Common Sense Advisory ran a study into international buying behaviours a couple of years back, including Spain. They found a whopping 75% of international consumers are more likely to buy products marketed in their native language.
59% never or very rarely buy at English-only sites. For businesses that deal in Spanish-speaking countries, that’s a huge chunk of your potential market.
After all, Spain is the 5th largest economy in the EU with GDP of $1.2 trillion (ICEX). Spain is the UK’s 8th largest export market, worth over $13 billion a year to UK businesses, according to the OEC.
That’s why over 12,500 foreign companies do business in Spain, including 70 of the Forbes100 (ICEX).
So, do you want a slice of the pie? If so, plain old English content marketing isn’t your best route to success.
Instead, opt for Spanish content marketing and you’ll unlock a whole market of buying-ready Spanish-speakers who wouldn’t otherwise think twice about your product.
But that’s easier said than done, and stepping into the international waters can be intimidating. Don’t worry though – we’ve got your back.
Here are our three top tips to get Spanish content marketing right.
3 ways to make sure your Spanish content marketing efforts pay off
#1 – Start from the beginning
Here’s the thing. Many businesses don’t translate marketing into Spanish at all, so any attempt means you’re ahead of the curve. But there’s still a right way and a wrong way. Well. An alright way and an infinitely better way, anyway.
If you have done any Spanish content marketing translation, odds are you’ve done it the alright way. Which is where you create an awesome blog in English, then simply translate it into Spanish. Chuck it out there and hope Spaniards appreciate the effort.
The better way is to start from scratch, not from an original post.
The foundation of any good content marketing strategy is your understanding of your audience. That understanding informs your SEO strategy (what are people searching for; what will they find interesting and relevant?) which in turn dictates how many people click, read and convert from your blog.
The best foundation for Spanish content marketing is the same. Think strategically about the personas you’re targeting, and the keywords you want to build content around.
Keywords should reflect buying intent, and that will likely differ from England to Spain because English and Spanish consumers have different buying habits. Ensuring you optimise for Spanish buyers will make your Spanish content marketing more successful.
#2 – Think about the complete user journey
One mistake content marketers always seem to make in English, let alone in Spanish, is forgetting to ‘join-up’ their content marketing efforts.
It sounds obvious, but content marketing has a role to play in your business. That’s an important point. In marketing-speak, it means content marketing should be part of your funnel, nurturing your audience until they’re ready to buy from you. If you don’t join the dots, you’re not content marketing. You’re just writing.
So what does joining the dots look like? It means your content marketing is part of your overall marketing strategy. It might look something like this:
- Jenny searches “trainer trends 2017”
- She lands on your blog about the latest trainer trends
- Which links through to an e-book on trainer fashion tips
- Which leads her to an interactive ‘what’s your style’ game
- Which leads her to a style consultation with your online rep
- Which leads her to buy your trainers
A surprising number of businesses get this wrong – and that’s in English. Add Spanish into the mix, and you wind up with orphan Spanish posts floating sadly around the ether, connecting to nothing.
That’s not Spanish content marketing, and it’s not moving the needle for your business.
What you need instead is to map your intended user journey for your Spanish buyers, and create “content assets” that correlate to those steps. Like specialised Spanish landing pages, calls-to-action and pop-ups.
If that sounds like hard work, it is. Which shouldn’t put you off because the rewards can be huge ($13Bn/year huge in the UK) but you do have to commit to the strategy. Adapting your English content to Spanish takes more than just word-for-word translation.
#3 – Adapt your content
This comes back to the principle in point #1 – Spanish content marketing isn’t just English content marketing translated word-for-word into Spanish. Compare any professional Spanish marketing translation to the original and often you’d be shocked how much has changed.
Stories, metaphors and examples tend not to translate well, for instance. Think about why you tell a certain story in your writing. Because you want the reader to emotionally identify, and therefore connect more to your writing (and be more likely to buy from you).
Say I’m writing a blog about growing up, and I say I miss my mum’s Sunday roast. For English readers, that simple statement works on an emotional level. Almost everyone can relate. But for Spanish readers, that reference likely misses the mark – which means the whole blog might miss the mark, which means your investment isn’t paying off.
Effective Spanish content marketing means really understanding cultural nuance, to get under the skin of your audience. Maybe that Sunday roast becomes missing siestas when I get my first office job, for example. The point is, you can’t emotionally impact your audience unless you know your audience well and adapt your content accordingly.
The moral of the story: Localise, don’t just translate
These three tips can be summed up in one piece of advice. If you want to excel at Spanish content marketing, you need to localise – not just translate.
Don’t think about Spain as a straightforward extension of England with some Spanish thrown in. That’s a mistake. Instead, recognise that Spain is a unique market – and should be treated that way if you want to unlock its millions of affluent, buying-ready consumers for your business.
We’re bias, but we’re big believers in the power of professional Spanish translation. If you’re serious about unlocking the Spanish market, a professional Spanish content marketing translator can help you get there. And that’s great news, because our Spanish translator library is right here and ready for you.