When doing business internationally, cultural differences are a tricky landscape to navigate. Recently, a Turkish colleague of mine and I were discussing a new book catering to English-speaking people who want to learn Turkish. The title, when translated, is very sentimental in nature. Although it seemed perfectly natural in the original Turkish, it’s not something you’d normally see as the title for an educational book in English. My colleague noted that, looking at the title alone, the author really didn’t know how to appeal to American readers.
Anticipating the customer’s initial reaction is so important when choosing how to market a product. Although a book isn’t always judged by its cover, a first impression is hard to erase or amend. It’s difficult enough to try and predict how consumers who speak your own language will behave, let alone those who live on the other side of the world. In today’s global marketplace, it is more critical than ever to prepare for cultural variation.
-By Berbay Principal Sharon Berman