Ready to move into global markets only to realize that your website is chock-full of content? Not quite sure if the global market you are aiming for is going to give you the desired return on investment (ROI)? Instead of going full bore into a top-to-bottom website localization for global markets, consider using minimum viable content (MVC) to formulate a localized trial run website for data collection.
Minimum viable content (MVC) is the art of translating the minimum amount of material required to reach new customers and presenting your services to a new global market. Effectively it refines your content to its most basic format and presents it as a means to test the waters. It helps to determine if a new global market should get full localization of your top-to-bottom website content.
MVC strives to influence the behaviour of your customer base through minimum content while teaching you something about your customer's response and behaviour traits. Perhaps your homesite is fantastic, and yet, as it turns out, your MVC localization site has a higher conversion rate, largely because it is more succinct. Marketing trends are ever fluctuating, and multiple exposure points to your product can improve conversion.
Minimum viable content (MVC) is an evolutionary step forward from the minimum viable product (MVP), made popular by Eric Ries in his book The Lean Startup. MVP is an agile approach to product development which strives to take a product, i.e. what you are promoting and turn it into a process, i.e. an evolving feedback loop for conversion improvement. According to Snap App, "content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing; however, it generates close to three times as many leads." Proof Positive Content states that "74% of marketers have seen a big increase in both the number and quality of leads after executing an informed content strategy."
Assumptions are wrong
Yevgeniy (Jim) Brikman, author of Hello, Startup and the founder of Atomic Squirrel, believes that an MVP is a process, not a product. "MVP is a process that you repeat over and over again: Identify your riskiest assumption, find the smallest possible experiment to test that assumption, and use the results of the experiment to course correct."
When you build a product, you make many assumptions. You assume you know what users are looking for, how the design should work, what marketing strategy to use. You also guess what architecture works most efficiently, which monetization strategy makes it sustainable, and which laws and regulations apply. No matter how good you are, some of your assumptions are going to be wrong. The problem is, it is not easy to identify which ones.
The only way to find that out—the only way to test your assumptions—is to put your product in front of real users as quickly as possible. When you do, you often find that you have to go back to the drawing board and pivot. You'll likely have to go back to the drawing board more than once.
Product and process
Content marketer and strategist Mael Roth agrees with Brikman: "We should very much treat content just like a product, however accumulating assumptions to test quickly, and discard or keep, has to fit within a certain framework. Content Strategy can provide that framework in order to be 'strategically agile'." -i.e. turning marketing analytics into a process of test, refine, discard, retest.
Roth goes on to describe what he calls 'The Pillars of MVC, which outlines points of focus regarding substance, workflow, structure, and governance, as a strategy to connect content to people. He explains that you're going to have to re-evaluate these points of business time and time again:
- Goals, audience(s) and messaging
- Your organization's main, prioritized storyline (topical perspective)
- Structure and business format
- Evolve workflow & governance regarding tasks & roles
The Agile framework is about short term attainable goals reviewed and continuously revised as the product evolves to meet a bigger picture of overall business growth. It was never intended to apply and use MVC for simple, localized trial runs and data collection. MVC was a natural progression in the agile process, that of refining and streamlining a process for efficiency. The application of MVC on a marketing level has proven hugely successful in terms of optimizing growth.
At Andovar, we make use of the latest technology for MVC and MVP. Our talented team understands that applying various methodologies to your business plan may be a difficult concept, and we're here to walk you through the processes. As is true of most technology, growth is exponential, and change is constant. Whether you're upgrading a homesite or implementing localization for global marketing, the key is to keep up with the marketing trends as they come, so that you maintain your target audience in spite of technology changes. Our experienced staff are here to make that transition smooth.
Find out more about website translation and MVP strategy in our Website Translation Ultimate Guide.