Spanning the Globe: This Digital Marketer's Approach Caters To Different Cultures Around the World
Ayman Kaddoura has made a name for himself by creating cross-culturally relevant and accessible content
While many digital companies have been accused of being culturally insensitive, Ayman Kaddoura has made a name for himself as a leader in the industry by creating cross-culturally relevant and accessible content. His company, The Bridge Technology, serves clients around the globe.
When it comes to marketing, Ayman Kaddoura has seen it all.
In the last 15 years, he's worked in every corner of the marketing industry: from sales executive to general manager of My Media Consultancy to CRM agent for the CRM Middle East. Along the way, he's helped clients such as BMW, Audi and Range Rover optimize their digital infrastructure to increase revenue and improve customer experience.
Only when Kaddoura left his role as a CRM agent did he realize just how much potential there was in digital marketing and development globally. Freelancing opened his eyes to how different cultures think about digital marketing differently; and how those differences can be used to increase business success worldwide.
Many developers working in cross-cultural environments can get stuck in their comfort zone. You might choose tools and workflows you know well and have experience with; even when they aren't the best options for your environment.
"Digital marketing is an umbrella term for the marketing of products or services using digital technologies, mainly on the Internet, but also including mobile phones, display advertising, and any other digital medium."
Digital marketing is universal. Digital marketing is a tool that can be used just about anywhere to sell just about anything. But each culture has its nuances of how it responds to digital marketing efforts and which channels are most effective. For example, in the United States, digital advertising is often an effective strategy for most businesses.
In the Middle East, however, many people use ad blockers on their computers and smartphones — as much as 40% of users according to some estimates — so you have to consider alternatives like public relations or email marketing to reach them.
Globalization has been steadily increasing over the years, and today's business landscape is more competitive than ever. Digital marketers need to scale their campaigns to reach an international audience. But how do you translate content and maintain its integrity when so many different cultures speak different languages?
Understanding cultural differences across the world is a significant factor in success in digital marketing. The slightest differences can make a world of difference.
For example, take the color blue. In Western cultures, blue tends to be associated with calmness and relaxation. However, in some Eastern countries, it means femininity and masculinity. What about red? Red is often associated with danger or anger in Western cultures and happiness in China.
Your messaging must be communicated clearly and effectively regardless of culture, but this can be tough for marketers who don't know what's appropriate for specific regions.
We're seeing more and more integration between customer experience (CX) and digital marketing. Historically, these were two separate tracks, but now we're seeing brands streamline their processes to provide a consistent customer experience online, on mobile, and in-store. The future of digital marketing is about creating a seamless experience across all touchpoints.
As the world becomes smaller, brands that want to grow must think globally.
Ayman Kaddoura says a clear understanding of cultural differences is critical to any brand that wants to grow its customer base beyond borders."You're building a global brand, so you have to understand different cultures and religions," he says. "The key is to be inclusive and respectful."