The global recession has companies stuck between a rock and a hard place: While the belt is being tightened all around, localization budgets are re-evaluated to achieve short-term savings. However, those cutting down on localization efforts might miss out on life-saving business once the economy picks up.
Imagine the following scenario: You have just bought a piece of build-it-yourself furniture and opened the assembly manual. The instructions in front of you look like a first grader has written them. How do you react? Do you try to decipher the manual or do you just toss it aside?
Surely many of us have experienced such an annoyance. Businesses selling products across the globe have started to see a new trend arise, in which globalization is no longer enough. Now, customers are looking for the next step; they’re looking for Globalization 2.0. This goes beyond standard globalization and focuses on tailoring information to each country based on cultural differences and linguistic nuances. In many cases this means not only localizing to each country but also localizing to specific regions and dialects.
As more companies conduct business internationally, they are becoming more familiar with this trend. Customers are paying much more attention to companies and products that provide materials for them on their own terms. While some companies have been localizing for a long time, it has only recently become a broad trend. Companies have to decide whether or not it’s worth their time to cater to each specific market with which they interact. This decision may not be easy.