US business people dont all seem too switched on

13 replies
I read a number of threads about US based warriors saying very basic things to US business people and those business people seem to be amazed, ie a social media person apparently didnt even know there were such things as mobile websites, there are many examples of US business owners not having the foggiest about a basic piece of everyday internet.

Now granted we know cos thats what we do, and we wouldnt know how to deep clean a carpet, how to retune a Mustung, how to get out of a speeding fine etc , but here in the UK there doesnt seem to be so many business owners that dont have a clue.

I am amazed at how many times I read a warrior saying they mentioned mobile websites, they mentioned Facebook fan page, they mentioned whatever, and the US based business owner was flabbergasted, 'I gotta have me some of that' .

In the UK here they may not have those things in place, but they could very likely come back with some good info and questions on it, theyd be highly unlikely to be amazed at the mere mention of it as they are already aware of it, just maybe not yet implemented.

So either the US business owner is errr shall we say a tad slow , the warrior is bigging up the situation and reaction more than reality or the UK business owner is amazingly well versed in whats available. Most likely a combination of all three.

A little bit tongue in cheek but with an element of truth.
Your thoughts...........
#business #people #switched
  • Profile picture of the author ZachWaldman
    Well, our country is a lot bigger, and there's a big difference between New York City and anywhere in Mississippi (where electricity itself is new).

    In other words, they may be selling to people in the middle of nowhere.

    Also, compared to most countries, America actually has a crappy network. It's slow and there's not as much access to the Internet here as there is in other parts of the world where it's ubiquitous.

    As a result, we're probably a bit behind in some respects.

    On the other hand, your food, post office, and dentistry sucks.

    It all balances out.
    Zach Waldman - Los Angeles Magician
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  • Profile picture of the author shockwave
    I agree with Zach (except for the part about your food, post office and dentistry - I've never been to the UK, so I can't comment on that).

    I think the U.S. - and certainly some geographic parts - are a LOT slower at adopting technology. Also, age demographics has a lot to do with it. We have a country full of folks who are moving into they do things old school. The sheer mention of a custom FB landing page, or mobile websites..etc sends them into a frenzy. They might think it's all to "techy" or maybe the offline consultant is indeed hyping it up (I think it's a mixture of both!).

    Either way, we have a much larger population on this side of the pond, so the potential amount of "technology challenged" peeps is larger as well.
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  • Profile picture of the author ZachWaldman
    I was kidding. I friggin' love fish n' chips and chicken tikka masala!
    Zach Waldman - Los Angeles Magician
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    • Profile picture of the author YseUp
      I think the idea of the 'mom and pop' operation or family owned restaurant doesn't really exist here either.... at least not in the cities.

      I visited a couple of restaurants in my neighbourhood and discovered they were all owned by one business... needless to say the owner doesn't hang out at the premises.

      The one thing the UK does have a lot of is trades-people: plumbers, gardeners etc. I think that's the angle to approach.
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  • Profile picture of the author driven247
    I will second some of those comments that it's a bit of a mixture of the warrior hyping things up a bit and a potential behind the times business owner. Although I have never had a business be completely flabbergasted by the mention of a mobile webiste or social media or even a regular website for that matter (yes there are tons of businesses in the US that don't even have a regular website) I have had business owners very excited and "all in" when I have described to them what these services can do for you.

    For instance everyone knows about facebook and just the mention of facebook actually turns off some business owners. But when I explain to them it's the internets version of word of mouth they get it and are excited. The main reason for this is because word of mouth is how most small businesses got their start and they know how powerful it is.
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  • Profile picture of the author redlegrich
    I remember the first time I went to Europe in 1990 and saw bar code scanners for airline luggage. At that time in the US they were still doing tags by hand. But, we had things they did not of course. I have a friend I work with Australia and he is always complaining about thee backwardness of Brisbane business owners. It all depends on where you are and exposure to what's up. Even here in Seattle, certainly a high tech hub there are lots of business owners way out of date on what is current. Of course we do all have high speed Internet!

    Lack of knowledge is always to our advantage, it gives us a chance to engage in a consultative sale and show real results.
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  • Profile picture of the author DazedandConfused
    I'll agree we have business people who seem unaware of new internet trends - I was shocked at that "social media person" too - but that is to our advantage in many ways.
    Zach does have a point about the vest wasteland of the US, but there has to be some podunk village in the UK as well that would rather stay unaware of the outside world. It's simply advertising and promotion and enlightenment to get them up and running. Many small business do not yet get the Global Village concept.

    There's a guy I just read about in a previous post trying to go offline from Pakistan - and we think we got podunk to deal with?

    The US was connected by highways -
    and I challenge your "Mustung" :rolleyes: to a race in my 69'GTO.

    But the idea of the internet highway is still puzzling to many.
    When I heard one of our Senators explain "the internet is a series of tubes"???
    Our politicians need to be educated too...

    While I'm on this particular bent about our politicians being unaware - there is a dangerous move by big cable lobby to restrict our internet usage...Net Neutrality is being challenged in the house and senate. Educate people what this could do to them.
    They want to partition the internet - in effect sell it to the highest bidder -
    Some bills are cleverly being named to do just the opposite of their intentions - read the bills - Big Cable is very crafty!

    Tell our Representatives NO to big cable - YES NET NEUTRALITY
    For more info go to:

    I will now get off my soapbox, and we return you to your regular programming.
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  • Profile picture of the author thehypnoguy
    I live in Podunk's Podunk so I agree with Zach 1000% on this. The real problem is getting them to pay attention long enough to educate them. Of course I live in an area with of lot of 1st cousin breeding

    Martin Blakley
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    • Profile picture of the author DazedandConfused
      Originally Posted by thehypnoguy View Post

      I live in Podunk's Podunk so I agree with Zach 1000% on this. The real problem is getting them to pay attention long enough to educate them. Of course I live in an area with of lot of 1st cousin breeding

      Martin Blakley

      So you could just go to any family reunion - (and bring some beer!)
      You've got their attention as long as the beer lasts!
      (plus- you are hypnoguy.... "look at this pretty pocket watch.....")
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      • Profile picture of the author Kay King
        A lot of what you read about offline is hype - know who to listen to and believe. There's a perception of small businesses as "internet stupids" and it's the fad to talk about small business owners as if they are totally uneducated.

        I dislike that - people who are running small businesses today are the cream of the crop because they are surviving in this economy. They are probably making more money than the marketer trying to sell them on IM hype.

        Too many marketers trying to appeal to the offline market approach it from "look at all the cool stuff I know how to do". When their spiel doesn't impress the business owner, they rush in to post "guy was stupid".

        The people who succeed offline learn something about the business they are approaching and have developed 2-3 concrete suggestions to sell to the business owner based on what will increase HIS business.

        I'm not an expert in offline but I've had 2 small business ask if they could hire me when I simply mentioned (as a customer) improvements they might want to make to their small websites.

        Small business owners do not spend money wildly or they wouldn't be in business today. They are often receptive to possible online promotion - but they recognize hype a mile away. We often say your attitude matters - and I think it's especially true when you sell to offline businesses.

        Actually, Mississippi has been on the grid for a few years now. You may have missed that announcement. There are places I'd rather live - but California isn't one of them j/k

        Saving one dog will not change the world - but the world changes forever for that one dog.
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  • Profile picture of the author techlover
    I thinking your are talking about my case in where I mentioned a mobile website to the social media guru and they didn't understand.

    I didn't provide all the details. The person had seen them before, but didn't know how to use them or knew that people made them. They only thought large companies had them.

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  • Profile picture of the author DazedandConfused
    @ Kay King-
    You are right - true statements all - they are not stupid by any means - they are busy building a business...many do not have the time or inclination to keep up with new trends in marketing with this technology as much as they would like. We are there to help them do that.
    As a Silicon Valley expat, I will not take offense to your "california roll" :rolleyes:
    But if you don't keep ahead of the game there - you're dead in the water...

    @ techlover - I misunderstood the "social media confused" part of your story too - this is still a great advantage though because they thought the tecnology was not yet available to them - only big business could afford it - you just leveled the playing field.

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  • Profile picture of the author WillDL
    A lot of it is hype.

    The funny thing is, as far as I can tell, the rare business owner that immediately leaps at what most offliners are offering aren't doing it because the offliner just showed them something they had never heard of. Business owners are more cautious than that. The ones who jump are usually the ones who are thinking "damn, I wish I could figure out how to get [insert widget here] up and running for my business." right before the offliner makes the pitch.

    Occasionally Relevant.

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