Published: 03 October 2014

I recently gave a presentation to a number of leading Belgian brands managers and directors. The presentation was based in my many years working with clients on global campaigns. Now I'm not going to rehash the presentation here but there were one or two points that are definitely worth sharing.

Aside from the all the technical challenges of a global campaign - platform, infrastructure, content, measurement etc there was one defining factor that made more of a difference thank anything else. That factor was, local team support.

The local team, I.e. The team that looked after a specific country made the difference between a good role out and a bad one. This then made a difference to whether each campaign that was run in a each country was successful or not.

What I learned from this is that as much as global digital marketing campaigns focus on the customer from a brand perspective, they must also focus on the local brand. This means a number of things in my experience.

Firstly, any global campaign must be able to be personalised for each country. Global brand consistency is important but cultural sensitivity more so. Inasmuch as we constantly talk about personalisation we also need to consider cutlural personalisation of the brand. Now I'm not advocating differing brands and experiences for different countries but brands should not assume that because something worked in country x it will work in country y.

Secondly, every market team should be able to dictate at least the last 10%. What I mean by this is that a global campaign may have a number of predefined ideas, strategies, creative treatments etc, the local team needs to be able to buyin and take ownership and this can only happen if they have an input and therefore a feeling of ownership and value.

If you've ever taken a trip overseas and have stayed with local people or had a proper local guide (one that doesn't come with a uniform) then you will already know the importance of local knowledge. In marketing, campaigning and digital delivery, it's no different. Local knowledge and a desire to be involved are paramount to global success.

Nick Towers

Managing Director


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