When managing social media on a global scale, companies often struggle with finding the right balance between a uniform strategy and one that caters to diverse markets.

There are two main ways to handle global social media pages. One involves a central strategy adapted for various locales, aiming for consistency with localized nuances. The other approach opts for unique strategies tailored individually to each market, offering a more personalized approach.

Each approach has certain perks and considerations, so let’s break them down.

Consolidating global social media pages: An overview

How local should your global social media strategy go?

This is a common question for brands starting with global expansion on social media and those at a point of reassessing their current strategy.

Each brand is different, and in many cases, there are multiple routes you could take—and multiple reasons for doing so. At VeraContent, we generally recommend two approaches to our clients (or a mix of both):

  • Approach 1: One central strategy, localized for additional markets
  • Approach 2: Unique strategies for each market

We’ll dive deeper into each of the two approaches in the following sections. 

However, before deciding whether to adopt a local or global approach in your social media strategy, first conduct a thorough self-assessment to align your approach with your brand’s unique characteristics, goals and resources. A few crucial aspects to consider include:

  • Business objectives and priorities: Is your focus on global market penetration, regional dominance or a combination of both?
  • Target audience analysis: Understand their preferences, cultural nuances and communication styles. Assess whether there are significant variations across regions or if there are universal elements that can be used globally.
  • Product/service homogeneity: A global approach may be more suitable if your offerings are consistent across regions. If there are substantial variations, a localized strategy may better address diverse market needs.
  • Brand image and values: Do these aspects need to be adapted for different markets, or can a consistent global brand identity be maintained?
  • Resources: Assess the available budget and resources for global social media management. Consider whether sufficient resources exist to maintain multiple localized accounts or if a more centralized approach aligns with the available capabilities.
  • Internal capabilities: Does your in-house marketing team have the linguistic and cultural expertise to manage localized accounts, or are additional resources or external expertise required?
  • Market analysis: Identify regions with existing brand awareness, growth opportunities or strategic importance. Evaluate the competitive landscape and cultural factors that may impact social media engagement.

Once you know where you stand on the above points, you’re better prepared to decide which approach to take: a centralized or local strategy. 

See also: Global or local social media accounts: How many do you need?

VeraContent CEO Shaheen Samavati and head of business development Kyler Canastra discuss when to translate content vs. create it from scratch in this podcast episode.

Approach 1: A centralized strategy, localized for additional markets

The first approach is maintaining one global page and creating localized versions for different key markets. 

“It makes sense to take this approach when you have a product or service with a very similar offering across markets, and your target audience is comparable across markets.”

Shaheen Samavati, CEO at VeraContent

One global account is a good starting point for further growth. In an ideal world, you’d have one global account and focus on developing a killer strategy there before figuring out how to replicate that success in additional markets. It’s much easier and cheaper to adapt and figure out what works and what doesn’t when you’re only operating one account. 

But that’s not the reality for many brands. Chances are you found this article because you already have multiple local accounts and are considering consolidating them. In that case, we recommend deciding which pages to keep based on the market’s importance, the page’s performance and whether another page already serves that market.

You can also consolidate accounts by language to focus on creating a larger following on fewer channels. For example, if you have several inactive accounts targeting different Latin American countries, you might consider consolidating into one channel, either targeting just one of those markets, a broader region, or even all of LATAM—depending on your business strategy. If it makes sense to do that, use the current most active account as the basis. 

Make sure to revise any accounts that will be shut down to see if any content can be reused on the remaining channels.

Here are a few tips for successfully implementing a global strategy with localized accounts:

  • Prioritize creating an excellent strategy across social media platforms in just one language (for example, global English or the local language where you’re headquartered) and then work to replicate what works on other accounts.
  • Centralize all content management and localization processes. Start with one content calendar and adapt it for the other markets.
  • Set up brand guidelines for all social media profiles and remain consistent. For example, use the same profile image, bio description, cover image, etc.
  • Create a global content submission process for those who were creating content for the old pages to contribute content to the remaining channels.

Example: Ria Money Transfer

Ria Money Transfer is an example of a brand creating a centralized global social media strategy and adapting it for key regions. The brand maintains one global account in English on Instagram and Facebook, along with several localized pages.

At VeraContent, we help Ria Money Transfer create and localize content for their four main languages on Facebook: English, French, Spanish and Portuguese. We also help them with their TikTok strategy, where they’ve taken a global approach, maintaining one account but featuring diverse content that is representative of their global audience.

Learn more about their TikTok strategy in this blog post: TikTok marketing strategy: Should you go global or local?

Rafael Castillo Dragone, global sponsorship coordinator at Ria Money Transfer, shares his experience working with VeraContent during this client testimonial

Approach 2: A unique strategy for each local market

The second approach involves creating a unique approach and different content for each market. 

“You should consider creating a separate strategy for each market if your service offering differs across markets and you have different target audiences—especially if there are significant cultural differences that would impact your content strategy.”

Shaheen Samavati, CEO at VeraContent 

To do that, you need to identify your most important markets and go all-in on those markets. Since you’ll invest more resource-wise in each market, you’ll likely want to narrow them down even further. Remember to only have enough accounts to which you can realistically pay attention.

This may mean merging or even closing more of your other accounts. Create a list of all the markets you’re considering, and then ask yourself: “Which market—if I focused only on that one and went all-in on building a following—would have the biggest impact on the brand’s success?” 

Ask that for the remaining markets on the list until you have a list of no more than 10. Then, figure out how many you can realistically go all-in on with your budget and resources. 

Factors to consider to help make the decision:

  • Which markets are the biggest business priority? Where does your business want to grow?
  • Where do you already have an audience to build on?
  • Where do you have the most resources for sales and customer support to deal with the increased brand interest generated in that market?
  • Which markets have your industry’s best content collaborations and influencer partnership opportunities?

Here are two top tips for successfully implementing localized social media strategies:

  • Create unique content calendars for each market. You will need a local social media manager in each region—either in-house or external—who knows the market and your brand inside and out. Make them responsible for creating the content calendar, recommending campaigns and promotions and giving feedback on results.
  • Develop brand guidelines and resources for each language. Since you’ll have more people involved in creating content with this approach, it’s extra important that brand guidelines are clear and easy to follow. That way, each local social media manager will be confident that they accurately represent the brand.

See also: 5 global social media essentials—and when to go local

Example: St. Dalfour

French fruit spread brand St. Dalfour is taking a local approach to its social media with multiple localized social media accounts in key regions. At VeraContent, we help the brand localize content for the New Zealand, Australian and UAE markets.

We repurpose a lot of the content from the US strategy across to the Australian and New Zealand markets—but not as much to the UAE, as this region requires more localization. For example, see below an example of a Christmas-themed post on the St. Delfour New Zealand Instagram page. 

St. Dalfour New Zealand Instagram post example

Below, meanwhile, is an example of a localized post on the St. Dalfour UAE account, which celebrates UAE National Day.

Localized St. Dalfour Instagram post on the UAE account

Get expert insights on the best strategy for your brand

Whether you go for a global approach or focus on specific regions, the key is going all in. It’s like diving into a pool—commit to the jump and ensure you’ve got everything you need to make a splash.

Before you start, carefully consider what suits your brand and goals—and what you realistically have the capacity for. It’s always best to consult external experts who understand what goes into developing and implementing a successful global social media strategy. 

Book a call with us to get our take on your particular situation—no strings attached!