Transnational Strategy: Definition & Examples

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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Beth Hendricks

Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

Transnational strategy offers a global perspective to your marketing efforts. In this lesson, you'll learn what transnational strategy is and see a few examples of it in use.

What Is a Transnational Strategy?

You live in an increasingly more in-touch world than ever before. You arrive at work in your European car. You wear an American-made dress. You talk to your friends holding a smartphone built in Asia. For lunch, you sample Mexican food and, on the way home, you stop at the international grocer to pick up lemongrass for a Thai soup.

The advent of the Internet has made goods and services from around the world available at the click of a mouse. Companies are expanding rapidly into new territories and countries. More and more, you're seeing products and the marketing of those products shift to an international focus. But how do you enter a new culture and promote your goods and services effectively for a new market?

You've probably heard someone exclaim ''It's a small world!'' when talking about mutual friends or news stories that somehow impact them. You could also say it's a small world in the retail and marketing environments as well. Increased channels of selling and transporting products and myriad options for communicating across the street and around the world have made it feel like a very small world indeed.

Transnational strategy takes advantage of the new smallness of the world, by allowing brands and companies to expand their global footprint in the selling of their goods and services, while taking into account cultural and societal differences that shape consumers in their native environment. That is to say, for example, that a food manufacturer based in the United States may want to expand their presence into Mexico, but must consider the appropriateness of the product in that environment including how to market it based on that specific culture and those customers' behaviors.

It's not enough to simply enter the global marketplace without a plan, and not just any plan will do. Your marketing efforts in the United States may or may not work in Europe, Asia, or beyond. Understanding that and the market differences between your company's country of origin and where you're looking to expand can help create a successful strategy. If you look at your current marketing strategy inside your native country and your marketing segmentation efforts, in which marketing is different for men versus women or new customers versus repeat customers, for example, you can see how a transnational marketing strategy might be applied on a grander, global scale.

To succeed in transnational strategy, you should take many of the same steps you would in any marketing plan: conduct research to identify and define your target market; assess the strengths, weaknesses and opportunities in your new market; and understand the consumers, customs, societal norms, and practices of the country or culture you're considering.

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