Insights for Marketing in Australia

Australian marketing best practices

For globally minded marketers, Australia is always a tempting target for expansion beyond the two big English-language countries, the U.K. and U.S. But the fact that Australians share a language with their anglosphere cousins doesn’t mean you can just copy-paste in identical content for this new market — Australia has its own unique culture and quirks, and any successful campaign must account for these key differences.

Though large in terms of sheer landmass, Australia is a much smaller and more concentrated market than other English-speaking countries, with its population of 23.75 million standing at roughly 1/3rd the size of the U.K. and 1/13th the size of the U.S. Don’t let their size fool you though: According to 2016 reports by analytics firm IAB Australia, the Land Down Under is at the forefront of the global trend towards increased usage of smartphone and tablet devices.

As of mid-2016, Australian users topped 600 million total smartphone and tablet sessions — nearly double the number of desktop sessions. And beyond the increased use of mobile devices, some 74% of Australians say they rely on their phone at least as much as their PC when searching for news, advice or information.

All of this paints an exciting picture for international marketers, especially those who specialize in the smartphone or mobile space. Let’s review some of the key tactics and insights that go into a successful Australian marketing campaign.

Aim small, not big

Australia is a relatively small market, especially in the B2B space. This means that your organization’s reputation is key to any successful marketing strategy — if you make an outstanding ad buy or serve a client well, others in that industry are going to take notice. The reverse is true as well: Both competitors and friends are going to see if you stumble.

This smaller field of play presents some great opportunities for the savvy marketer. The biggest businesses in any given Australian industry all know each other, so if you knock it out of the park for one of your customers, you can expect that other players in that field will hear about it due to the ease of monitoring developments in a smaller space. As is the case with many other closely knit markets, success breeds success.

However, the small population and high cost of shipping to the country mean that top industries are already seeing market saturation. This means that businesses looking to work in popular Australian industries like mining, pharmaceuticals, or finance are going to face steep competition.

A better and more reliable strategy is to focus on lesser-served industries, or niche services within a larger industry umbrella. From there, your Australian operation will bloom thanks to referrals and word-of-mouth.

Don’t forget about logistics

In contrast to its smaller population size, Australia is the sixth-largest country on the planet by landmass, which presents special challenges if your business model involves shipping a physical product to the island-continent.

Products marketed in and shipped to Australia must be sold in Australia, or else you run the risk of additional costs piling up to store or ship unsold inventory. This differs from regions like Africa or Asia where your product can more easily reach multiple countries since surplus inventory can be shuffled to neighboring nations. Ultimately, logistics should always be a top item in any discussion about selling products in Australia.

The China connection

Where many economies stumbled after the 2008 global recession, Australia weathered the downturn and has maintained a solid year-on-year GDP growth of 3% or more. This is in large part thanks to the strong cultural and economic links forged between Australia and China — Australia has seen a steady flow of Chinese immigration in the past decade, and investment dollars have followed, with Australia being a particularly hot spot for real estate investment among China’s upper class.

And that means more opportunities for your business since new markets and products are cropping up that were unheard of even a decade ago. If you’re advertising in Australia — especially in major cities like Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane  — keep an eye towards markets that are emerging thanks to this influx of Chinese immigrants.

Learn the slang, love the culture

Australia is a majority English-language nation, but that doesn’t mean that the sentiments and slang popular in the U.S. or U.K. will translate directly. American and British culture is generally popular across the country, but Australians still have their own unique (and highly sarcastic) sensibilities to consider. Effective communication is the cornerstone of any good marketing strategy, so your team should certainly take some time to familiarize themselves with Australian slang and lingo.

The country’s size and low population density mean that Australians put a premium on the personal, individualized approach — direct mail and email are hugely popular in Australia for this reason. Business networks like LinkedIn are another great way to form personal connections with key individuals like in your target market.

As is the rule when marketing internationally, one of the most reliable approaches is to team up with local firms or consultants. They’ll be a valuable resource for guiding you through this new market space; these partnerships can then become a springboard to grow your business in Australia as you develop connections with other players in your industry.

With the right tweaks to your strategy and a firm grasp of the culture, your business can soon be making waves Down Under. To learn more about how call tracking and analytics go hand-in-hand with your Australian marketing strategy, start your 14-day free trial with CallRail.