Posted in American Business and Consumer Insights for Europe on September 20, 2010 by Ann-Christin Lindstedt
European marketers and business owners: are you interested in B2B (business-to-business) opportunities in the United States? I'm guessing that places like New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago spring to mind, right? Of course, these are huge metropolitan areas filled with every kind of business you can imagine. Yet, allow me to direct your attention to the southwest for a moment. Texas, to be more precise. What springs to mind now? Cowboys, longhorn cattle, and rodeos? Oh, but there's so much more.
This year's ranking by CNBC crowns Texas as the top state in the USA for business in 2010, citing Texas' strong economy as an important factor. In fact, the study describes the Texas economy as "the 15th largest in the world, according to government figures; larger, for example, than all the Scandinavian nations combined."
Now, Texas is my home state and I'm certainly "Texas Proud" about a lot of things the Lone Star State has to offer. But when it comes to business opportunities, I'm not unduly biased. The evidence is clear.
Here are just a few of the characteristics that make Texas a top place to consider for B2B marketing and other business opportunities in the USA:
Cost of Living:
Technology & Innovation:
Population/Workforce & Land:
► Interested in learning about effective B2B marketing, communication, content marketing, corporate communication, and copywriting for Texas and the rest of the USA? Please leave a comment or contact me with specific questions and/or topics.
Posted in Social Media on September 07, 2010 by Ann-Christin Lindstedt
A study by Alterian earlier this year revealed that only 16% of people surveyed in the US and UK thought companies were "genuinely interested in them." That may not surprise you. However, this might: the number more than doubled for those using social media — 33%. Then again, that shouldn't be surprising either.
As customers, we want to be heard. We want to know that our concerns matter. We want to feel as if we have some connection and influence. We like the idea of having the inside track on deals and information.
Social media — including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and blogs — are meeting those needs in ways other marketing and communication vehicles don't, driving more and more consumers and businesses to seek online social interaction and influence when making buying decisions.
So, if you've been wavering about whether your company can benefit from social media involvement, maybe you should look at it from another point of view. Will your customers benefit from you engaging with them via social media? That question seems to have a clear answer, which means companies that use social media in smart, genuine, and engaging ways are gaining an edge.
If you're worried about biting off more than you can chew and not being able to sustain an appropriate activity level, take little bites. There's no rule that says you have to use every available social channel. Look at what others in your industry are doing. See where their customers are responding and how. Then decide what best fits your own client base.
Hubspot has put together a useful ebook (Online Marketing Opportunity Report: Social Media, Blog and Search Engine Activity by Industry) to help you evaluate online activity within your specific industry. (Thanks to Sarah Mitchell — who, by the way, is doing fantastic things with social media — for her helpful blog article highlighting this resource.)
This in-depth article about Social CRM from Mashable is a great place to start if you want to know more about using social media for Customer Relationship Management.
Social Media B2B is, you guessed it, a wonderful resource for business-to-business (B2B) companies using social media.
Social Media Marketing Magazine is a new online publication filled with information from some of the brightest minds in social media for business.
If you're using LinkedIn, check out the Social Media Marketing group. There's a wealth of knowledge shared there daily.
Posted in Social Media on May 31, 2010 by Ann-Christin Lindstedt
As a business-to-business (B2B) professional in Europe, does the pervasive use of Twitter in North America mystify you? Do you think of it solely as the domain of bored American teenagers and Hollywood stars? I understand. I did, too, until I tried it — and now it's a vital component of my marketing strategy and business development.
After reading the smart discussion on Twitter's #B2Bchat last week about best practices for professional and corporate Twitter (transcript), I was inspired to share what I've learned from great minds like theirs as well as my own experiences.
I hope this will convince some of you who are wavering about Twitter to give it a try — and to do it with the right mindset.*
1. Twitter is a Good Investment of Your Time. Really.
2. Don't Worry if You Don't Find Your Clients on Twitter. Focus on Industry Influencers & Thought-Leaders.
3. Realize It's Social: Follow and Interact.
4. Twitter Success is About Consistency of Value and Interaction.
5. Don't Feel Pressured to Perform or Conform. Find Your Voice. Be Yourself.
6. Have a Plan or You'll Get Sucked into a Twitter Time Warp.
7. If You Want Global Reach, You Will Need to Use English — at Least Part of the Time.
8. To Interact with an International Audience, Use Scheduled Tweets.
9. Give it at Least 3 Months of Concerted Effort before Forming an Opinion.
► If you're an experienced Twitterer, what other advice would you give someone who isn't convinced Twitter is good for business?
► If you're in B2B, what questions do you have about Twitter's usefulness for your business?
► If you're ready to create a Twitter profile, be sure to follow me @useglobalreach. I'd love to hear from you.
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