The Best Way to Earn Credibility Abroad

20 May, 2024 - Saudi Arabia

As a foreign business in a new market, credibility is your most valuable currency. Your ability to foster trust quickly needs to be part of your strategy early and often. And while a well-crafted marketing strategy can get you there faster, focusing on the wrong elements like the “features and benefits” your business offers could set you astray in the early going, especially in a place like Saudi Arabia where trust is built differently than it is in the UK.

This month, we dive into our C Studios credibility framework of using data, facts and success stories to share your message. Through analysis of marketing content in recent years, these three pillars perform incredibly well in attracting attention and generating action. Why? Because they’re based on irrefutable facts and utilize third-party credibility – nothing increases trust faster.

Here’s what each means with samples of the type of content to use.

Data: Updated data from reputable sources can be powerful in objectively positioning your business. This includes third-party product comparisons, market studies, sourced industry trends and first-hand research. The more you can tie this into a well-constructed methodology, the more you will appeal to those in Saudi Arabia, which tends to look hard at a defined process. British culture can favour “getting to the point”, but that’s not the path to success here – use data to build this foundation.

Facts: Third-party endorsements can’t be refuted. Media quotes or stories are the most effective, especially when it is media in the market you are entering. But this also includes rankings and any “firsts” or “mosts” that your business is bringing to the industry. Also consider any business certifications and sector associations to which you belong. These can be seen as unnecessary in your home market, but in Saudi Arabia, they can provide that extra layer of instant trust.

Success Stories: This is listed last, but should be first. Stories of others that have used your product or services go a long way. However, the important part is to include the transformation that your offer provided to that success story, as that is what new customers will be looking for in working with you. A simple formula to consider is: We worked with X, and we accomplished Y in Z time. X is the company you helped; Y is the impact you had and Z is the amount of time it took to happen. The less time it took for that transformation, the more impactful the story.

It’s a mindset shift to avoid talking about all the great features and benefits of your company, but if it’s not backed by data, facts and success stories, the message rings hallow.

This type of messaging needs to be incorporated in everything from social media and advertising to your website, pitch decks, factsheets and more. Buying is very much an emotional decision, but getting into a consideration set requires credibility first. Once you have that in hand, it frees you up to build a relationship and work on the emotional elements that close the deal.


About the author:

Steve Duncan

Managing Director, C Studios