Is there more to marketing effectively across EMEAR than just translating your marketing? Yes. 

Lottie O'Donoghue B2B Campaigns, B2B Marketing

Is there a country called EMEAR? Has anyone ever said they live or work in EMEAR?   

Does everyone that lives in France have the same habits, preferences and challenges as people that live in Germany?   

Of course not. So why do so many B2B marketers treat EMEAR as if it is all one homogeneous zone? 

This is because planning effective international marketing often leads to more questions than answer.


When it comes to marketing in Europe, it’s not just about translating English into the local language. Stereotyping is a common practice, with many B2B marketers using these as the basis of buyer profiles to personify customer groups. However, applying stereotypes to an entire country can be risky, unfair and quite honestly a misdirection. 

Over the years, we’ve identified several factors to consider: 

Different cultural norms:

Each European country operates differently, with varying cultural norms. Erin Myer’s excellent book, The Culture Map: Decoding How People Think, Lead, and Get Things Done Across Cultures, highlights some of these distinctions, from the perceived direct approach of the Dutch to the data-driven decision-making of the Germans. The book provides the below scales to map and understand the differences: 

  • Communicating 
  • Evaluating 
  • Persuading
  • Leading 
  • Deciding 
  • Trusting 
  • Disagreeing 
  • Scheduling

A summary of the model is here and well worth a read.


While regional stereotypes can be helpful in highlighting the diversity of B2B markets across the continent, we have to be careful how they are used. We’re comfortable with stereotypes as our use of personas is essentially using stereotypes. However, we must remember that personas are applied to defined customer roles, not whole countries. 

An awareness of cultural norms will help you as a B2B marketer. The book is worth every penny for anyone working in international teams or marketing to them.

Different roles in buying:

Different parts of Europe exhibit variations in the levels of influence and responsibility that certain roles hold within an organisation.  

For example, roles within procurement and buying hold more prominence in markets like France — particularly within industrial/manufacturing, and therefore the decision-making processes differ. This is reflected with distinct preferences for the type of information required to make a buying decision. Similarly, markets like Germany favour case studies, frameworks and surety whereas, others such as Italy are comfortable with a less defined approach.   

What remains consistent is our recommendation for B2B marketers to conduct buyer profile analysis to comprehend the most critical markets and how they work, adapting accordingly.

Different preferences for creative storytelling:

Creative elements also differ across territories within B2B marketing, including messaging styles and visual representations. Communications should be tailored to align with the preferences of each specific market. 

Different channels for different territories:

Various parts of Europe are best reached through different channels. While newspapers and websites traditionally had regional focuses, in the age of social media, it’s a mistake to treat all countries as identical, even if it is easy to do so.  

For example, there are many platforms, such as XING, which are region-specific, illustrating the need for tailored approaches.

Different regulations:

The EU is at the forefront of data regulation, which can influence the marketing techniques you can legally employ. In particular, considerations regarding privacy and data hosting can influence your campaign plan and subsequent MarTech stack. 

EMEAR can be seen as a diverse collection of people with distinct preferences and needs. To be effective in producing powerful B2B marketing across all of EMEAR’s borders, it’s crucial to build your communications while considering cultural norms, buying unit characteristics, regional preferences in creative and storytelling, the right communication channels, and adherence to appropriate regulations. 

Easy, right? Far from it. But the best thing to do is ask the right questions and be wary of any easy answers. 




Lottie O’Donoghue

Lottie O’Donoghue

Lead Business Development Manager

A marketer through and through, before Velo, Lottie led the marketing function of a scale-up tech SaaS platform moving to the world of agencies to run Accenture’s ABM and marketing activity across EMEAR.  Now, Lottie leads the agency's teams for new business clients across brand strategy projects through to websites and campaign activation. She also owns Velo's own marketing, too.