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arreke

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arreke

Hi guys,

 

wonder if I can pick your brains on behalf of a friend. 

 

He has started a new blog called http://www.italianliving.net and has asked me what I think about it.

 

His idea is that of creating a social marketing platform dedicated to the asian market. He thinks that by creating a sort of narrative about Italy and the Italian culture he will be able to convey better and more easily the marketing messages.

What do you think? Is it a good/bad idea? What do you think of the blog (bear in mind he has just started so there are no many posts to read). Is it interesting or entertaining at least? What channels would you use in China to promote the blog?

 

Thanks for your comments and feedback!

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Lu

Some very initial thoughts:

 

If your friend wants his site to be read in China, he needs to have it written in Chinese. Many people in China know some amount of English, but only a small minority is comfortable enough in English to read English blogs. I suspect the same will be true for most other Asian countries.

 

Isn't this (building a greater narrative about a country to drum up interest in trading with/travelling to/studying in said country) usually the job of the government, perhaps through the embassy or other government organisations? Does something like that exist in Italy?

 

Channels to use: Weixin, Weibo, the various internet portals; and also the more established media: newspapers, tv.

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Kobo-Daishi

 

Isn't this (building a greater narrative about a country to drum up interest in trading with/travelling to/studying in said country) usually the job of the government, perhaps through the embassy or other government organisations? Does something like that exist in Italy?

 

 

 

Yeah, a Dante Institute or something similar?    ;-)

 

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Silent

 

Isn't this (building a greater narrative about a country to drum up interest in trading with/travelling to/studying in said country) usually the job of the government,

Why would it be exclusively the job of the government? Sure, governments like to promote their country because they expect to profit (business, tourism etc). If op's friend has something to sell (marketing messages according to the post, whatever he may want to market) and an Italian blog can help in that nothing wrong with that. There are also commercial magazines promoting or at least dedicated to certain countries and region with the goal to make a profit and specialised travel agencies promoting a certain country/region in order to profit. I see no reason to be territorial about it.  

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Lu

I didn't mean the OP's friend shouldn't get into this, I meant that perhaps it's already being done on a much larger scale. That might make his efforts a bit superfluous, or alternatively he could consider offering his services to whatever agency would be doing this. Commercial magazines dedicated to drumming up interest in certain regions are often at least partly commissioned by the government of that region. I know the Netherlands, for example, does a lot of so-called 'Holland Branding' around the world.

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Silent

 

Commercial magazines dedicated to drumming up interest in certain regions are often at least partly commissioned by the government of that region.

Without doubt many of them will be financed partly by the local governments through subsidy or imho more likely advertisements, but they are commercial, for profit enterprises often under the umbrella of large publishers.

 

Not sure however or drumming up interest in the region is the fair qualification. I never really researched them, but I would say it works a bit the other way. Generally they're somewhat popular holiday destinations for which there already is an interest, then some interactive dynamic develops where they've an interest in further promotion. Often a lot of the advertising is travel agents and local products and services, tourism board advertisements are relatively limited.

 

I never really studied the magazines or their financing and only very rarely bought them, but I consider magazines like Italy, Spain, France and Asia in the Dutch magazine stands genuine special interest magazines, not promotional folders. Not really different from other commercial special interest magazines aimed at cycling, hiking, computers etc. All are biased through their subject and commercial interests.

 

OP's friend seems to expect he can market something (presumably Italian products) more efficiently by drawing a public through a blog. Seems fair enough to me. The fact that others spread comparable/competing info on a much larger scale doesn't make it superfluous, the goal is different. Promoting Italy versus attracting people interested in Italy to market other products and services.

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