Many B2B companies want to sell in the East but don’t know where to begin. The language barrier is real – working in Eastern languages is challenging. In some cases, it is worthwhile to test the waters in English. For example, if you are in hi-tech your target audience may search in English – or at least some of them.
If that is the case, it is easiest to start with Japan. About 50-60% of search engine searches are on Google. That means you can use your existing account to start a campaign targeting Japan. And if you want to test ads in Japanese, that is easy to add whenever you want.
Yahoo Japan – only after testing Google in Japan
If you have positive results you will want to start a campaign with Yahoo to reach an additional 40 – 50% of your audience. Yahoo Japan is not the same company as Yahoo in the USA. The interface is different and you have to pay in advance. However, it is easier than working in China and Korea.
Korea and Chinese Search Engine PPC Interfaces
In Korea the dominant search engine is Naver. The interface is in Korean and it is best to have a Korean speaker or outside consultant to help you.
In China, Baidu is the main Search Engine. The interface is in Chinese so it is best to work with a Chinese speaker or outside consultant.
It is clear, that it is best to test the major markets in Asia with Google in Japan, if possible. The interface is in English and it is the same platform you may be already using. You can reach over 50% of searchers this way. Korean and Chinese are more challenging as the platforms. Language and payment arrangements are different.