This is one of the 52 terms in The Language of Localization published by XML Press in 2017 and the contributor for this term is Andrew Lawless.

What is it?

The art and science of planning and directing operations in a global marketplace so that a product or service cannot be distinguished from a local offering. Marshals resources for internationalization, localization, translation, and transcreation for their most efficient and productive use.

Why is it important?

Localization strategy is part of a company’s global content strategy and defines how they adapt their products or services for one or more international markets and what financial, vendor, and technology resources they need to do so.

Why does a business professional need to know this?

Localization strategy involves:

  • Defining business goals in international markets, such as revenue, profit, market share, expansion, consolidation, conversions, etc.
  • Identifying current obstacles that prevent the organization from efficiently and effectively adapting its products to local needs.
  • Developing a plan that includes people, processes, technology, and funds to implement that strategy.
  • Implementing the plan, measuring progress, and adjusting the plan accordingly.

A localization strategy requires extensive knowledge about the target market and competitors’ positions in that market. Understanding local consumer preferences, cultural, political, and legal frameworks, as well as technical requirements, is also central to satisfying customer needs and wants.

A localization strategy connects localized content with business outcomes. Web analytics have made it easier to assemble a remarkable level of detail, but they aren’t the whole story. For example, web reports rarely tie into sales data.

Teams need to make cognitive connections between multiple sets of data so that they can understand the larger strategic picture