An overview of the expatriate market
The word expatriate derives from the Medieval Latin expatriatus, which is the past participle of expatriare (to leave one's own country). According to this definition, expatriates are people who have left the country they were born in and are are living in another country.
In many cases, the term expatriate refers to people that do not plan to reside in their new country permanently and normally retain their citizenship for practical purposes. In this strict sense, expatriates differ from ‘immigrants’ who usually plan to reside permanently in a new country and acquire permanent citizenship there. In addition, many people use the term expatriates only for skilled workers from developed countries who are temporarily working abroad (i.e. American expatriates in Spain), thus differentiating between expatriates and economic migrants who move abroad for socioeconomic reasons.
In reality, these distinctions are becoming more and more blurred. While the number of highly skilled expatriates from developing countries increases, there are also an increasing number of expatriates from developed countries that are moving abroad for retirement and other reasons. For example, there are today skilled workers from India working worldwide and and an increasing number North American expats retiring in Central and South America.
Due to the worldwide increase of expatriation, an increasing number of service providers now offer products and services that are specifically designed to meet the needs of expatriates. These include specialized expatriate health insurance schemes, expatriate banking solutions, expatriate tax advice, relocation and other services. This has also increased the demand for expatriate marketing solutions, since expatriates are hard to reach through traditional advertising channels.
In this section, we take a look at what expatriates are, where they are coming from and going to, their concerns and some of the longer-term expatriate trends that are developing worldwide.
Profiling expatriatesHow do expatriates differ from the average population? Though comprehensive data about expatriates worldwide does not exist, a number of sources helps to identify some characteristics which many expatriates have in common.
Expatriate challengesExpatriates moving countries are faced with a wide range of challenges, including the move itself, the search for accommodation and the integration into a new society.
Expatriates worldwideIn 2010, more than 200 million people will be living abroad. While the number of worldwide expatriates increases, it is hard to quantify the exact size of the worldwide expatriate market.
Popular expatriate destinationsWhen it comes to identifying the most popular expatriate destinations, there are various indicators such yearly migration, quality of life and salaries that can be taken into consideration.
Expatriate benefitsSince very few employers like the idea of being sent abroad for a limited time, many companies offer special expatriate benefits and other financial incentives for those who are willing to relocate.
Expatriate mediaWhen it comes to news and information, most expatriates do not necessarily switch to the local media of the country they’re resident in. Instead, they usually consume a mix of sources, including special expatriate media.
Expat advertisingWhich marketing tools are you using to reach expatriates with your advertising? And are those tools the best tools to use to reach your target group?