South­east Asia: mak­ing a con­nec­tion

Blog­ger net­works and well con­sid­ered con­nec­tions are both es­sen­tial strate­gies for ex­porters tar­get­ing the South­east Asian re­gion, says Anne Lo­choff.


Tap­ping into blog­ger net­works in in­ter­na­tional mar­kets is one of the best ways to cre­ate an on­go­ing re­search and devel­op­ment tool for your busi­ness. That’s the ad­vice from strate­gic mar­ket­ing ex­pert Anne Lo­choff, who knows the power of dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing from her two decades of ex­pe­ri­ence in the field.

Lo­choff chairs NZTE’s Beach­heads pro­gramme for South­east Asia, which con­nects com­pa­nies with pri­vate sec­tor ad­vi­sors. She of­ten ad­vises firms on their strate­gies for en­ter­ing the re­gion, and says dig­i­tal chan­nels can­not be ig­nored.

“It’s key that New Zealand com­pa­nies start look­ing at dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing as a part of their strat­egy for en­ter­ing new in­ter­na­tional mar­kets,” she says. “I con­stantly ad­vise com­pa­nies to in­vest in on­line com­mu­ni­ties. If you’re go­ing to be in food and bev­er­age, es­tab­lish a foody blog­ger net­work that you can build up and also use as an R&D tool.”

Lo­choff says net­work­ing with th­ese on­line com­mu­ni­ties can be done from any­where, and is a fast way to be­come known in a new mar­ket and re­ceive in­stant feed­back on prod­ucts and ser­vices.

“This will be an in­vest­ment in mar­ket­ing where the as­set is yours, and the on­line net­work will ser­vice you in mar­ket and out of the mar­ket be­cause blog­gers have ex­ten­sive net­works.”

Tra­di­tion­ally, Lo­choff says mar­ket­ing has been lim­ited to one-off events rather than on­go­ing on­line chan­nels that re­quire in­vest­ment.

Dur­ing her ca­reer she has re­cruited, trained and led teams that de­vel­oped elec­tronic, print and dig­i­tal

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