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Monthly Newsletter - March 2014

How to perform Social Media in Russia and Russian speaking countries


Vkontakte Russian social media


VK (also VKontakte – which is Russian for “in touch”)

The social platform is especially popular among the Russian speaking countries, so if you are doing business in Russia, Ukraine or Kazakhstan for example there is no way around VK.  According to an article on the Cisco network VK was number one online resource and has had 110 million registered users in 2011 – the numbers have been growing since. Surprisingly it is the largest social media platform in Europe after Facebook. Taking this popularity into account it is very recommendable for any business, which does business with Russia to not only have a Facebook and Twitter account, but also to get acquainted with VKontakte and use it successfully in order to build as well as grow a strong and loyal customer base.  With that in mind, motivate yourself and keep in mind that it is not an obstacle, but a tool!


What can you use VK for?

Mainly the network allows its users to send messages to contacts in private or make public posts, you can share and tag images, there is a large base for audio and video data, also users can play browser-based games.  When using VK you have access to a movie selection, which you can watch for free. Creating groups and events is also a popular feature, as already known from Facebook. Basically what makes VK successful, is simply that it combines the advantages of different social media (Spotify, Facebook, Flickr,…).


Doing Marketing on VK

VKontakte is a perfect tool to get in touch with your audience in Russian speaking countries, even though they are spread across different time zones. Similar to Twitter, you can also get your company registered as official brand.


Also, you can target your audience according to demographics, geografic location, based on a specific topic or time. Additionally the topics range from women-only forums (on make-up etc) to music and entertainment, which makes it easier to get directly to your desired audience and keeps your success rate up.


One aspect which should not be underestimated is the advantage, that VK is also ranked very high on search engines, such as Google and Yandex.


VK is free to use, but there are advertisement options available, where you can boost your image on the webpage.  Pavel Durov, the founder of VKontakte, is eager that the company introduces each month 7 major improvements, so that they can stay one step ahead of their competitors.


Mr. Durov was interviewed by Mr. Bishop from the Economist:






Maslenitsa – Pancake week

In Russia “Maslenitsa” is known as a week of celebration and preparation leading up to lent time. The word is derived from the Russian word for butter - “maslo”.  

During this time Russian pancakes, called blinis, are produced and eaten at large quantities – no wonder: they are delicious! Their preparation differs slightly from the pancakes known in the UK and you can add extra flavour by eating them with sgushyonka, jam or soured cream. It is really up to you! For those of you who come across “Sgushyonka” the first time: it is the most popular Russian condensed milk, which is used as a spread for Blinis for example and I (Hanna Bodingbauer) personally find it has a caramel-like taste.


Women’s day 8th of March

The part women play in the Russian society is still mainly a traditional one: very family-oriented and following a traditional outlook on life. The role of men and women in relationships is clear. Russian men are commonly supposed to make a living for the whole family, whereas Russian ladies are known to keep the family in order and being caring mothers. Nowadays many Russian women are also eager to educate themselves and build up their career independently from their partner, nevertheless to most family is still their first priority.

In Russia, Women’s day on the 8th of March is highly important. It’s a day when appreciation for women and their role is shown – men bring flowers or chocolate (or kost commonly both) to their partner and often do the household on that day, but also at work women receive small presents honouring and appreciating them. This is an official day-off in Russia.


Women’s Day is also celebrated in the UK:

City of London Business Library
Sisters are doing it for themselves: International Women's Day Conference 2014
Friday, 7 March 2014 from 10:00 to 16:00 (GMT)

More information:


Are you celebrating Women’s day? You should! 
It does not always have to be presents and flowers, admittedly they are an easy as well as highly appreciated gift, but what about cooking for your loved one? Learn cheesy ways how to say I love you in Russian! Invite your mother for dinner or just really take time off from all duties and focus on enjoying life together. Sometimes it can be great to have an occasion like Women’s Day to interrupt day to day life and realise how valuable the women around you are to you.



Russia4Brits project logo


We are more than happy to announce that our nationwide competition - Russia4Brits - is in a full swing.

Those who have been following the progress of our Russia4Brits project know: over the past weeks we have made great progress!

Here is a short description and a summary:

Russia4Brits is a nationwide competition for UK children and youth aged 4 up to 19 years. We are asking for creative work (poems, photography, articles, drawings,…) around the topic of Russia, its culture and everything creative they can come up with! Our goal is to break through stereotypes and strengthen the image of Russia within Britain.

Lately we have made great progresses by forming a partnership with Erarta Galleries London and also won EasyJet as a supporter, which kindly sponsors flights to Moscow for the lucky winners.

Together with our partners, supporters and of course the great work of the teachers and children we hope to reach our goals and we are very much looking forward to receiving even more of great artworks.

Welcome are all works submitted by latest 7th of April, 2014.


You can find Russia4Brits on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

For further information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.






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