I have heard so many companies ask "Why isn't this working in Asia? It has been working brilliantly for our company for years!" 

Fine, guilty as charged - I have asked that same question in the past.

Localising your business is one of the trickiest and overlooked aspects of business expansion. To many, localising means translating, word by word. But this is a trap that can be extremely frustrating. 

This article has highlighted some misunderstandings that global companies face when localising their websites and brands. What came to my mind immediately is how much "cuter" and "animated" sites in Asia are. 

While many in the West would see cartoons and animations on a professional website as ... well... very unprofessional, in Asia, animated figures and cartoon characters speak louder than certificates and guarantees. 

For instance, one of the biggest drugstore and personal care chains in Hong Kong uses a fluffy ginger cat as a brand ambassador and that's all we remember. Out of every business aspect of a supposedly reliable business, we remember that fluffy ginger cat. 

So when you are looking to localise your brand and look for talent, be sure to talk to people who know the market well. Choose a partner who has demonstrated success and gained recognition in what they do in that region. It will make everything so much easier.