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  • Vivien Koh

Brands Without Borders: Branding From an International Perspective

๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—บ๐˜‚๐˜€๐˜ ๐—ฆ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฏ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—ด๐—น๐—ผ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜-๐—–๐—ข๐—ฉ๐—œ๐——-๐Ÿญ๐Ÿต ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ?


Business leaders understand that dominating a local market is only the beginning, in this day and age of limitless business development and expansion. For many Singaporean businesses, the objective now is to attain global dominance. Due to Singaporeโ€™s small domestic market, many of our local homegrown businesses have begun market expansion efforts, with companies like Secretlab and ShopBack expanding their outreach overseas to become global businesses.


As we shift gears and venture into the post-pandemic era, conversations with many of our client partners have shifted towards how our clients can expand their markets overseas and build international brands, while doubling down on business transformation. Even our team at VKT has embarked on our overseas expansion journey, and we are beginning to establish our presence across Asia. While expanding globally seems attractive and lucrative, it can only be achieved through a thorough international branding strategy.


๐Ÿ“Œ A Breakdown of International Branding


International advertising and branding, in its most basic form, is the act of establishing brand consistency and distributing the brandโ€™s message across countries all over the world, beyond their native country. When a company extends outside its home market, it must make sure that its brand positioning remains relevant and transferrable to other markets. While its marketing approach, message tone, and/or other aspects may be tweaked to better appeal to a local audience, its brand positioning must stay constant.


Through effective international branding strategies, local homegrown brands on top of Secretlab and ShopBack like Love, Bonito, TWG Tea, and Charles & Keith have managed to globalise their respective brands across the globe. Evidently, when international branding is done correctly, there's no denying its reach.


๐Ÿ“Œ Case Study: Internationalising TG Group


Recently, VK Transformation (VKT) was entrusted with creating a unified TG brand and solidifying its market positioning, in accordance with TG Group's aim of being a top HR workforce solutions provider in the Asia Pacific region. We were able to establish a TG brand identity that truly expresses what TG stands for, and successfully roll it out across the Asia Pacific region, thanks to our branding and digital marketing experience, and our design thinking approach.


VKT also redesigned the TG Group's websites in four countries, transforming them into fresh, modern, and professional sites that are user-friendly and meet the demands of all stakeholders across all four countries. Evidently, there is a strong need to take the needs of each country into account while internationalising, and there is no perfect one-size-fits-all approach.


๐Ÿ“Œ Brand Strategy: VK Transformationโ€™s 3DM Framework


Using our 3DM consulting framework, VKT has helped many B2B & B2C businesses address their complex business challenges and accelerate their business models, digital brand, marketing, and sales transformations. VKT brings together expertise in three domains, supported by data-driven diagnostics and analytics in aid of better decision making & revenue performance. Hereโ€™s how our 3DM framework works in the context of international branding:


1๏ธโƒฃ Discover


Here, we would unlock opportunities and challenges, and this would be done by surveying the target markets and understanding the needs and preferences of stakeholders within the markets through the means of thorough and rigorous market research.


In the context of TG Group, we identified trends within four countries in the Asia Pacific region, and highlighted ones that were relevant to the TG brand, and derived implications from these trends. These insights were then translated into our solutions in TG Groupโ€™s international branding and website strategies.


2๏ธโƒฃ Design


In this next phase, we would seek to tailor innovative solutions, and this would be achieved by prior competitive benchmarking, and ensuring that these solutions are not only innovative, but aligns with the needs and demands of stakeholders within the target markets. Here, we would also flag potential threats, and come up with solutions for prevention and mitigation.


For TG Group, VKT carried out the design of the four websites, along with establishing suitable and effective international branding and website strategies that would eventually be rolled out in the four countries.


3๏ธโƒฃ Deploy


Bringing it all together, in this Deploy stage we work closely with our clients to ensure a smooth roll-out process, based on the work done in the prior two stages.


The newly-designed TG Group websites went live at this stage, and the rebranded versions of TG Group were rolled out in the respective countries.


4๏ธโƒฃ Measure and Manage


Lastly, it is vital to measure success through the use of predefined metrics, as these metrics will signal how well our strategies have worked, and whether there is any potential room for improvement.


In the case of TG Group, the site roll-out was a massive success, and TG Group was able to reach and connect with customers in all four target markets.


With these four phases in mind, it is important to note that customer centricity should always be at the heart of each solution and strategy that is rolled out. If the needs and wants of customers are not taken into account, no amount of research and preparation can otherwise ensure that the project will be a success.


๐Ÿ“Œ Ready to Begin Your International Branding Journey?


Hereโ€™s how your business can be next!


VKT offers a full-fledged 360ยฐ Digital Marketing Programme focused at accelerating your company's growth. Expect not only solutions in International Branding, but also a variety of other services ranging from Influencer Marketing to Social Media Management.


With our experienced EDG Certified Consultant, VKT boasts a proven track record in achieving a high EDG application success rate that grants your business up to 70% funding for SMEs and 50% for non-SMEs. So wait no longer, and contact us for a virtual coffee chat to discover more about how you may start your international branding journey and leverage our expertise!


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