[Posted by Jennifer Bélissent]
Not all technology buyers in emerging markets are accessing the internet from mobile phones or dial-up connections. In fact, many places in countries considered "emerging markets" are rapidly resembling more mature markets, in income levels and especially in mobility, internet access, and now broadband penetration. Shanghai, for one, is probably better connected than some cities in the middle of the US. What does that mean for technology marketers? It means that they can leverage their complete toolbox of marketing tools to reach those audiences — and increasingly they are doing just that.
One tool that is rapidly entering the mainstream is the use of virtual events to connect with audiences far and wide. In Forrester's Business Data Services Global Technology Adoption Survey, IT decision-makers in emerging markets report greater use of virtual events to inform purchasing decisions than their mature market counte rparts — 42% in emerging and 37% in mature markets. When compared to physical events, buyers in some countries — Chile, Mexico and Vietnam — participate more in virtual events (see figure). And, tech marketers are paying attention. One of EMC's virtual launch events attracted almost 8,000 attendees from over 80 countries. And, you don't have to be big to have that success. Quest Software's 2008 Quest Connect event attracted almost 1500 attendees from 20 countries.
Stay tuned for some tips on how to plan and execute a successful global virtual event. And, in the meantime, take a look at my recent Forrester report, "Reach Real Global B2B Tech Audiences With Virtual Events: New Tools And Best Practices For B2B Marketing Beyond Borders." And, attend my upcoming Forrester Teleconference, "Reach Real Global Audiences With Virtual Events," on Monday, October 19, 2009, 1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m. Eastern time (18:00-19:00 UK time).