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What orange juice teaches us about content marketing

As I start to tackle my presentation* for the world's largest marketing conference in Las Vegas in October (yes, I know it’s a tough life!) my mind has been focused on articulating the challenges of marketing a b2b brand internationally.

Recognising the sometimes subtle and sometimes drastic differences required to ensure your marketing message is relevant and appropriate for each territory within Europe for example, seems obvious, but this often gets missed for global brands who try and target prospects in this region.

To make my point, let’s talk Orange Juice.

A respected breakfast table guest throughout the world, you only need to see the differences in language for a humble carton of Tropicana orange juice to make the point.

As you can see from these images, they are both for Tropicana orange juice. One is for a carton from the US market, one from the UK market – ‘pulp’ and ‘bits’ are the same thing, but use a very different word to describe them.

I was alerted to this distinct difference when a client from the US was over here in a breakfast meeting with us and queried “what the hell are bits?”

Reassured they are nothing more than ‘pulp’ in his world, he was content to drink on and the meeting continued.

But not without registering to us all, that if the language on something as ubiquitous as a carton of orange juice can be so different for two countries that speak the same language, you can see the challenge in EMEA with 23 official languages to wrestle with.

This is why localised content is so vital – whether words in your email, on the side of your carton, the conversation for your telemarketer or the lines on a web page, you must ensure that the ‘one size fits all’ approach is never the default.

Work hard to customise your content and you will reap the rewards. Assume everybody is the same and you may be left with nothing more than bits (or is that pulp?).

* Europe: A Data-Driven Multichannel Strategy