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What Online Business Owners can Learn from Illy and Estee Lauder

21st January 2014

The day when running a sloppy blog or a dreadful online store – and make money doing so easily – is OVER.  As almost everyone today can start an online business – often with nothing down – establishing a market is very, very challenging.

Let’s take a blog as an example. Today, you can no longer start a local blog and make a living out of it.  No way, Jose! Today, you need to transform your blog into an online magazine and manage it professionally like a global business.  Indeed, you are technically the owner of a global business, as your audience is, well, worldwide.

How exactly can you do that? You can find the answers from the web (Just Google it!) but to cut the chase of, I would like to recommend you one of the sessions of Singapore Sessions, a business leadership think tank which focuses on innovation.

The session features Mr. Andrea Illy of Illy Coffee and Mr. William Lauder of Estee Lauder.  Hosted by Bloomberg Anchor Betty Liu, the session talks about how entering an overseas market, like South East Asia, for example, is made possible by adopting an innovative business model.

Illy enters the South East Asian market by offering the same experience consumers enjoy worldwide.  On the other hand, Estee Lauder enters the Asian market by launching products especially made for Asian consumers and skin type.

Despite the different strategy, both companies are pursuing the same goal: To be a true global company.

Here’s what you can learn from Illy and Estee Lauder: Decide whether you want your content, products or services to be relevant to all audiences in different regions or do you want them to be tailored toward a specific audience on a specific regions.

If you run a blog, the former means you should cover topics relevant to the general audience worldwide. The latter means you should consider to establish a language-specific sub-blog which  content is written to a specific region – using local language.

The choice is yours!

Ivan Widjaya is the owner of, as well as the founder of several online businesses:, and He runs his business from anywhere, anytime he wants.

Cute business woman

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