Europe has benefited greatly from combining these 0s and 1s. Looking at the rankings on digital capability, the European countries are at the top. The 2007 e-readiness rankings produced by the Economist Intelligence Unit has placed six European countries in its top 10. Denmark is ranked number one – outperforming the mighty US. The Nordic countries account for three of the top 10 – a testament to their progressive use of information and communication technologies for economic and social development.
One of the recent big stories in digital business has been the massive growth and spread of social networking. We are the YouTube generation. With recruiters and potential employers checking out MySpace and Facebook utterings, and with the potential for smart business networking through online networks such as LinkedIn, our digital connections are very important.
In the marketing world, online advertising is changing the face of marketing across Europe. Since 2000, the web has become established as a mainstream media channel. Advertising spend on online and wireless is growing significantly: in some markets, it accounts for more than 5% of the country’s advertising spend and continues to rise.
Web 2.0, the second generation of the web, is offering genuine interactivity and means of mass collaboration through such applications as blogs, social networking, wikis, and podcasts. The web is now a participation platform that a huge number of people use. As a result, businesses locating to Europe have to think and act digital. Be a Web 2.0 inward investor.
Douglas Clark is director of Tenon techlocate, a site search and location marketing consultancy which is part of Tenon Group PLC.