B2B Breakdown Series – Episode IX
The world is becoming ever more globalized, with companies doing business across international borders. There’s nothing wrong with that — in fact, it opens yet more opportunities for growth! That said, there are times when the language barrier becomes a problem. The right approach to B2B outreach, though, is the same across cultures: simple, clear communication is best.
In this B2B Breakdown, we’ll look at a connection request we received from Europe and what it teaches us about effective international marketing.
Review of Initial Outreach
John Doe sent me a connection request asking if I was currently looking for new leads for Seahawk Media, which is my web agency. While yes, I always am, I found this message short and to the point, but very pushy. It was obvious that John wanted me to book his lead gen services. That request was nearly the entirety of the message — which meant he skipped the formalities and went straight for the sales pitch.
It’s always good to be clear in your intentions. I appreciate it when these cold outreach messages explain what someone does. That said, I would have still appreciated the opportunity to ask questions or learn what he does. Instead, he removed the chance for conversation and presented me with only a choice: book his services or not.
In other words, he put all his cards on the table. If I was not looking for leads, I’d immediately close this message and forget about it. And even if I were, I’d have no sense of how he operates or if his offer is worth my time.
Still, I was curious, and he’d linked me to the website for his company, DIM Agency. Before clicking on that, I decided to check out his profile.
Review of Personal LinkedIn Profile For B2B Outreach
The very first thing I noticed is that DIM Agency, the company he’s attaching to his connection requests, is not clearly identified on his profile. I eventually realized that DIM stands for Dutch Internet Marketing, which is listed. However, that connection is not clear, and his profile cover image lists what appears to be a different enterprise: LeadHQ.
That cover image is clean and simple with a strong value proposition, which is always a plus for LinkedIn profiles. After doing a bit of digging, I realize that the tagline shown for LeadHQ in the cover image is the same as DIM Agency’s, so presumably, they are the same business, although John has them listed separately on his LinkedIn profile.
But that disconnect is jarring, and I’m certain that most prospects will not spend time researching John’s various enterprises. As the axiom goes, “when you confuse, you lose.”
John’s ‘About’ and ‘Experience’ sections are descriptive and engaging. He has a nice summary of DIM Agency, along with some personal mission statements that add a touch of humanity. I also see lots of activity and followers on his profile, so it’s fairly clear that he’s legitimate marketing professional.
However, there is ambiguity, which is quite detrimental to LinkedIn.
Still, I click over to the LinkedIn page for DIM Agency.
Review of LinkedIn Company Page
Here’s where I once again got lost. DIM Agency page is not only sparse but also not in English! This immediately breaks that funnel that John was building by reaching out to me. It is absolutely fine to reach out to international prospects, but be sure that your page has content in the language those prospects likely speak.
This was a red flag for me. Even if I were interested, I could not effectively research the company John was pitching to me. And even if it were in English, the About section is remarkably short, and there are no recent posts. This is a fairly barren LinkedIn page, which does not instill confidence in me.
Bottom line? Always align your LinkedIn profile with your cold outreach messages — especially if you’re communicating with people who may speak other languages.
All the same, I continued to DIM Agency’s website.
Review of Website
The website initially seems a bit dated and simple, but its core message and value prop are very clear. They have a compelling headline (“Get an Edge on Lead Generation”) and tagline (“Plan for growth. We’ll bring the leads.”). I appreciate that the overall layout is very clean and easy to navigate.
And as I browse further, I find the site very visually enticing. Everything flows very well, each section has a clear purpose and concise copy, and I get a strong sense of the benefits that I would receive as a client.
There’s very little clutter; it’s all streamlined and engaging, with robust social proof and user-friendly language. I’m happy to be able to learn more about this company.
Which brings up the question: why couldn’t I do this within LinkedIn? Most prospects will not dig in as I did…which means DIM Agency could be losing international prospects due to their sparse company page and the pushy pitches from their representatives.
Overall, I found John Doe’s initial message to be nice and simple, but too sales-y. It was straightforward, yet did not lead me into a clear funnel. I appreciate a short and sweet message, but this one dove in too soon. John wasn’t starting a conversation. Instead, he was a bit bossy as he presented me with only a question: do you need my services or not? Ideally, you don’t sell that quickly. You build a relationship first — especially for international connections.
I also found John’s roles in DIM Agency vs LeadHQ a bit confusing, even if his profile was overall great with clear experience and endorsements. Also, when we go to DIM Agency’s page, their content does not accommodate international prospects who do not speak their first language. It’s only their website that is truly optimized for English-speaking prospects who want straightforward answers — and in that regard, DIM Agency excels.
So, what can you take away from this? Whether or not you’re doing international cold outreach, be sure that your messages are as engaging as your website. Pay attention to your reps’ profiles and how they present themselves. And of course, if you’re pitching to people who don’t speak your primary language, always provide a translated version on your LinkedIn page.
We get it. There are a million ways to improve your outreach to be more effective with your prospects, and sometimes it’s hard to figure out the next move. If you find yourself in this situation, click here to hop on a call with us. We’ll be able to talk about the details of your business and give you some advice on where to take your content and more.
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