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Cindy King’s Weekly Business Article Review – February 1, 2010

Last week I came across an interesting selection of articles on BizSugar. Here they are with some of the thoughts these articles inspired on international business.

The Value in “Raising The Bar”

Like this article? Sweet here.

There is a time when businesses are thinking about what they can do to go international when mindset plays a big role in success.  This article from the Five Forces Group shows how to rise to the task.

“It’s about standing out in a very crowded space.  It’s about paying attention to what is happening around your business not just within your business.  And most of all it’s about proving to others that you are able to be flexible and inspiring.  These create experiences and these experiences will immediately set you apart from your competition or it may even allow you to create your own market.”  This part particularly resonated with me.

What is your company doing to stand out?

The 5 Most Innovative New Online Business Models in 2010

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Rohit Bharghava looks at some new business models online.  When working with different countries you notice differences in how companies do things.  It’s a great source of ideas to bring back home.

With online businesses often come up with interesting business ideas and different business models.  Remember to keep a tab on what’s happening online in different countries.  This can be a rich resource to help you with the challenges you face in your own market.

Where do you find interesting business ideas?

Avoiding humour in Business or Job Hunting. Then the joke’s on you ….

Like this article? Sweet here.

Just to be clear, Paul Mullan actually believes humour is useful. Even in business and job hunting.  And I also agree with him in when communicating with international clients.  Now, most people will advise you not to use humour in cross-cultural communication.  And they are right.  Humour can backfire very easily.  This is why I never attempt being light hearted in writing.

But there are times when a gentle touch of humour in a person to person conversation goes a long way in strengthening cross-cultural relationships.  You have to choose your subject carefully, you must pay attention your humour goes across well and you should only use it sparingly.  But I’ve always been very happy I added a lighter touch to the conversation whenever I did.

What is your experience of humour in international business?

5 Ways to Share Content to Create Referrals

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This article by John Jantsch got me thinking about international web marketing.  The different ways of sharing content outlined here are good tactics.

But when targeting different international markets some methods work better than others.  And it might take some trial and error to find the best approach.

What international content marketing are you doing?

Niche Website Ideas

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John Crickett talks about the value of creating niche websites.  And of course you can also create international niche websites.  I wonder how many businesses are doing this.

Marketing to a highly targeted international niche through a website can help you learn a lot about your international business opportunities. With a little effort you can also create a solid business network in a foreign country.  Of course, this takes some effort, but it’s still a lot less expensive than doing this offline.

Do you know of anyone using niche websites to target international markets?

Building Products for Mass Adoption

Like this article? Sweet here.

I enjoyed reading Mark Suster’s article on creating products for 2 different groups of buyers: Techies and Normals (or Muggles).  My first thought was that there are definitely countries where there are more Techie buyers than others.

This is a great read to get you to think of how to create products for different markets.

Why do your international clients buy your product?

Marketing Lessons From Changing The Look and Feel Of A Brand

Like this article? Sweet here.

Susan Oakes gives an example of why you need to get feedback from your markets as you tweak your brand for a better fit with your audience.

This is also a great reminder for businesses adapting their brand to different cultures.  It’s easy to assume you are making the right decisions. You have to always listen to your market very early on before you make any wrong assumptions.

Do you know how your brand comes across in different countries?

Cindy King is a cross-cultural marketer helping businesses develop globally with international social media. Follow Cindy on Twitter @CindyKing

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  • Thanks for sharing Cindy, great selection! Found “The 5 Most Innovative New Online Business Models in 2010” very interesting. “Woot” is such a simply and extraordinary idea…

  • Woot is just excellent. Especially if they are drop-shippers with no fixed costs. It’s just mind blowing, they brought the ebay concept of a person selling just one type of item, to a unique proposition. Definitely like it

  • Hi Cindy, I really enjoyed the first article. “In my mind, I see doing something different as an opportunity to raise the bar” Simply love this quote, REALLY inspiring! Thanks for another great series, Niall

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