Tips for Growing Your Bilingual Small Business

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Written by AP Community

For hundreds of years, the United States has been a melting pot of cultures and languages. That trend continues today as immigrants continue to make up a large portion of the population and a greater number of people speak multiple languages.

If you cater to a bilingual customer base, then you may experience unique benefits and challenges when it comes to growth.

Now is a great time to build your bilingual business and connect with your customers.

If you’re ready to reach the next level, here are some tips for growing your business and generating more revenue:

Know How to Connect With Your Bilingual Audiences

The golden rule of marketing is to know your audience better than you know yourself.

If you run a bilingual business, then you probably already know quite a bit about your ideal customer, but big data is making it easier than ever to enhance your marketing efforts.

Even small businesses now have access to big data tools that can tell you more than you ever imagined about your customers.

You can mine your own historical data for demographic information, languages used on different devices, preferred communication methods, and more.

By using big data, you can get to know the wants and needs of your customers much more quickly.

You can even leverage data to personalize offers and spend your marketing dollars when and where they’ll be most effective.

Social Media Messaging Will Be Key: Here Are a Few Tips

Consistency is key in social media. You need to cater to your audience while staying true to your brand voice.

When you’re growing a bilingual company, you have to be especially careful about how you use language and how your translations will be perceived.

Obviously, you never want to resort to sloppy translations. If you need translation help, hire the best translators you can.

Building trust in multiple languages means showing that you are aware of the colloquialisms and nuances of the language and aren’t just translating your ads as an afterthought.

It’s also important to note that many brands create new words for products and campaigns that can potentially be used in both languages.

These are known as neologisms, and while they can be a great marketing tool, it’s important to use them with caution.

Sometimes, neologisms end up saying something silly, offensive, or just plain gross in another language.

One good example is Target’s “Orina” shoes, which translates to “urine” in Spanish. Use neologisms with care so you don’t accidentally alienate your audience!

Looking to Scale? Tips for Identifying Funding Options

Sometimes, you can’t rely on revenue growth alone to scale your small business. If you’re ready to take things to the next level, then you may need to think about seeking additional funding sources.

Depending on the size of your business and your ambitions for the future, you will want to consider several different types of funding options.

For many business owners, venture capital is the Holy Grail of funding, but it’s difficult to get and far from perfect. Many business owners end up signing too many of their rights away to secure venture capital.

Other options include angel investors, loans and credit, or even crowdfunding. Before you decide on what type of funding to pursue, consider the pros and cons.

What are the implications for your control over your business, the long-term cost, and even any potential effect on your personal and professional relationships?

These are important strategic decisions to make as you grow your business.

Networking With Employees, Other Bilingual Business Owners and More

As you probably already know, relationships matter in business. To grow the kind of small business you can be proud of, you’ll need the help of others.

It’s crucial to form strong relationships with your employees, other bilingual business owners, and mentors to ensure that you have the connections and information you need.

Networking takes time and is all about connection. Give more than you take.

By approaching networking in the spirit of friendship and not thinking about it as a transaction or something you can get, you’ll develop strong bonds that could turn into opportunities and even more connections.

Scaling can be a challenge, especially when you need to market in two different languages.

But if you make an effort to figure out exactly what your customers want, be mindful of your marketing strategies, and build strong connections, you’ll be well on your way to success.

About the author

AP Community

AP Community

Accounting Path community writers are passionate financial & businesses thought leaders eager to share their experience & ideas. Please note, community articles may contain links to products or services which we do not formally endorse and/or for which we may receive compensation.