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The ATC’s Member of the Month in March 2022 is Locaria, a multilingual content activation agency which specialises in supporting inhouse marketing and e-commerce teams, media agencies and creative production houses.

Lindsay Hong leads Locaria’s multicultural team and oversees the company’s global strategy. The ATC was delighted to chat with Lindsay about Locaria’s game-changing approach to content localisation, and gaining traction in new markets in the era of digital first.

“Locaria is an end-to-end marketing content provider, offering multilingual content at every stage of the marketing value chain,” she explains. “We started in a media agency and have grown to become a global company with offices in London, Barcelona, Mexico City, Cairo and Warsaw.”

In Lindsay’s eyes, Locaria’s USP is their ability to speak the same language as their clients and strategic partners, in every sense of the word.

“Whereas LSPs often start out as LSPs and then get into media, we evolved from a media team into a hybrid content solutions provider. We combine linguistic and content creation expertise with marketing and data science skills.”

What inspired this cross-sectoral approach?

“We recognised that media agencies didn’t do a great job at localisation and localisation agencies didn’t have a good understanding of media, which resulted in a lot of waste. Neither the costs nor sales models spoke to the clients. We saw a huge opportunity there.”

Locaria helps brand with international ambition expand into new markets, notably in Asia.

“We’re keen to tell clients that it’s not all about China, though. Obviously, China’s a huge market, and making it there means making it big. But everyone is trying to make it there, and the Chinese consumer is very savvy to this. Brands often underestimate the challenge.”

What about other Asian territories? “Markets like South Korea often fly under the radar – there’s a large middle class used to buying overseas products and transacting on foreign websites. At 60 million people, we’re not talking about a small market.”

In addition to gaining market penetration in Asia, Lindsay also sees Locaria helping companies in European markets such as the Nordics. “We always think of France and Germany as the big e-commerce markets, but things have significantly moved on. The local competition is extremely strong now – with successful local brands, retailers, and e-commerce sites. If you plan on competing but don’t have favourable payment, shipping, or customer experience on your website, good luck!”

So, what is Locaria’s take on the globalised local economy in terms of translation?

“One of Locaria’s values is equality in content. It always frustrates us when we meet marketers who assume you can translate content any way you want and the local customer will react as strongly as in the native market, where you’ve spent months honing your content. But the whole world is online now, and other markets have moved ahead.”

What newer cultural considerations does Lindsay see Locaria leveraging? “Everything changes so quickly online, so mastering the nuances of cultural sensitivity in snackable, synthetic and social media content is as key as knowing what channels people shop in and what media they respond to. New considerations around gender fluidity are hard to translate and can even be offensive in certain markets. We add value by advising on these considerations and supplying data-driven, authentic content that matches the needs of users of these media channels.”

Lindsay Hong of Locaria was in conversation with ATC CEO, Raisa McNab.

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