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The Internet seemingly erases geographic boundaries and makes it possible for businesses to sell around the world. But most businesses don't come equipped with the knowledge and resources to market to an international audience.

Targeting another country takes more than translating materials from one language into another. In many countries, people speak forms of Chinese, English, Spanish or French, but meanings can vary. For example, "elevator" in America is "lift" in England. Using "elevator" in a campaign for England might prove confusing. Other words, used incorrectly, can be downright offensive.

Yet some small and large companies successfully manage international business, whether doing so involves hiring a distance worker, selling products, buying products or using services. If it makes sense for a business to go beyond borders, what do its employees need to consider when marketing on a global scale?

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This Week's Dilemma

Promoting products and services in other countries

I don't have a specific product or service in mind. The Internet opens the doors for marketing to people anywhere in the world. Working with a global audience requires considering many things, including language and culture. How do you go about promoting a product on a global scale?

—Shannon, product manager

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Hank Stroll (Hank@InternetVIZ.com) is publisher at InternetVIZ, a custom publisher of 24 B2B e-newsletters reaching 490,000 business executives.