The joint project promotes technology exports by means of digital media
How to boost the exports of Finnish technology companies? This was the question that Jyri Arponen and Kari Penttinen from Tekes and Johannes Puro from ite wiki gathered to contemplate in the spring of 2017. This is how the the joint project of Business Finland and ite wiki began.
Arponen and Penttinen were working with Finnish cleantech companies in the CleanWeb program of Tekes, known today as Business Finland. Simply put, the export products and services of the Finnish technology sector were brilliant: there are currently numerous innovative companies in the country that promote the values of sustainable development.
During the brainstorming session, Puro came up with the idea of a series of articles that would present various cleantech innovations by means of digital media. He launched the itewiki.fi service, which collates the offerings of the B2B digitalization sector in Finland, and which today has presented hundreds of software companies in its blog media by interviewing their representatives.
The objective of ite wiki was to tell the stories of the cleantech companies and also to highlight in an interesting way the added value achieved by these companies through product development. At best, this will simultaneously help the reader to better understand the environmental challenge which the product was designed to resolve.
For example, the article on Welmu, a developer of biodegradable plastic, began with the words "The three solutions to the plastic waste problem". Since a truckload of plastic ends up in the sea every minute, it really is time to do something about it.
Business Finland’s CleanWeb program has toured from city to city, building a cleantech network in Finland. Events in Helsinki have taken place, for example, at Allas Sea Pool in Katajanokka. The photograph shows Johannes Puro from ite wiki; Outi Suomi, Head of the CleanWeb program; Project Manager Elina Koskipahta from ite wiki; Paula Eskola from Motiva and Anu Pousi from NIA.
ACCESSIBILITY AND SCALABILITY FROM DIGITAL CONTENT
"When comparing the analytics achieved with the ite wiki articles to those of company blogs, we have come to realize that we reach outstanding results by producing media content with interviews of cleantech experts. At the same time, we try to make the interview process as easy as possible for the interviewees, who are often extremely busy people", says Puro, describing the advantages of the implementation model.
Naturally, this approach incorporates the scalability advantages of digital media, unlike traditional export seminars. With the Internet, you can reach thousands of new customers in an instant, regardless of location.
The Technology Media was established for the purpose of publishing the articles and is the international version of the ite wiki blog media. Even though digitalization is present in a number of cleantech innovations, the inclusion of the term "technology" in the name elevates the perspective a notch higher than the ite wiki field of operation. This means that it can also include many industrial and other products too.
Known also in the cleantech sector, the interest group NIA, i.e. the Nordic Innovation Accelerator, was included in the project to help identify suitable companies and to bring its own network along to strengthen communications.
In its refrigeration appliances, Home of Cool combines stunning design with green values. The photograph is one from an article published in the Technology Media.
Some 30 interesting cleantech companies were selected for the program and the first 15 of those to enroll got to participate. Thus the compilation of the stories about Finnish cleantech innovations began and, at the time of writing this article, 14 stories have already been published. Each article has also had targeted advertising according to the presented company’s target market in LinkedIn, Twitter and/or on Facebook.
Before the interviews were begun, the responsibility for running the CleanWeb program was transferred from Jyri Arponen to Outi Suomi, who continued the promotion of the campaign.
"It is extremely important to promote the international visibility of the Finnish cleantech sector, because Finnish know-how is not known nearly as well as it could be. This operating model is a fairly new way for Business Finland to encourage and support SMEs in their internationalization efforts", says Suomi.
Head of the CleanWeb program Outi Suomi speaking at a morning clinic at the Allas Sea Pool in Helsinki.
All the participating companies so far have been very happy with this new approach.
"The editorial process was very easy for us, and the article served our objectives well beyond our expectations", says Veli Eloranta from Nordic 247, one of the participating companies.
Eloranta and his team have developed the Home of Cool refrigeration appliance, whose beautiful design is revolutionizing the refrigerator market, which has long been static.
Nordic 247 and its product Home of Cool is one the innovative cleantech companies presented in the Technology Media. Veli Eloranta is the second one on the left.
The presentation of Cleantech innovations in the Technology Media will continue until the end of February. What is future of the Technology Media?
"We already have a good number of implemented work and soon we will be able to see the analytics and qualitative results we have accomplished in a feedback survey.At the moment, the articles have had on average more than 800 individual viewings per page and more than four minutes per article, which shows that readers have found the content truly fascinating. If the parties are satisfied with the results, it would be great to scale the model for promoting Finnish technology exports even more widely", says Johannes Puro.
One of the biggest challenges of digital marketing is to get the contents distributed outside the company’s own circle. Measured on one indicator at least, the project has already succeeded: the articles have been more widely read in the United States than in Finland.
The geographical distribution of the Technology Media’s readers. In addition to Finland and the United States, the articles have been read in the Netherlands, Brazil, France and Great Britain, among others.
Read all the Cleantech Success Stories from the series: