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LittlePassports.com was set up by Co-Founders and Co-CEOs Amy Norman and Stella Ma in 2009. This was started with the thought of letting children explore the world, a subject which was close to the founders’ hearts because both of them grew up experiencing different cultures. The company provided subscription-based products and their initial target when they started were people who lived in the United States. Although they did dream of becoming a global company, they were held back by the lack of a huge budget. Later on, they realized that Facebook showed promise for them to tap into the international market and plunged into the idea when potential customers from France, Sweden, Singapore, and other countries began asking if they serviced their locations. It was a decision that made the company into the 30-million-dollar global business that it is today. How did they do it?
Norman and Ma knew that in order for their Facebook marketing to work, they needed to do their research and they decided that they should concentrate on the following factors – the prevalence of English speakers in the country, the country’s GDP, and postal service. Why these three?
The products are written in English which means that only those who can understand the language will be interested in these. The GDP on the other hand was an indicator on the buying capability of locations being targeted – some people may consider their products steep considering that these are sold in the dollar currency. And last, the postal service needs to be reliable to prevent loss and untimely delivery.
Once the locations were narrowed down, they then allotted a small budget for creative and ad set for different countries. If they were able to reach their target, then they knew that the country was a winner. Understanding the locality’s season and culture was also helpful since this allowed them to change their campaigns based on these – for example, you can’t deliver a summer campaign for US at the same time together with Australia because it would be their wintertime.
So can you build a global business with Facebook? That would be a yes or a no depending on how well you understand your own business and target market.