The first international communication of Vilnius

Gediminas’ letters about Vilnius could undoubtedly be called the first international communication project of this city to attract foreign business.

Although Gediminas’ letters were sent nearly 700 years ago, their message is relevant and used in today’s communication – inviting those who could contribute to the development and improvement of the city to Vilnius. We talked to the head of Go Vilnius Business Department Karolis Žemaitis about the ways of communication today and the importance of the city.

Message without time limit

“The goals of current communication are very similar to the communication of the past. Only a measure to achieve goals has changed over those 700 years, but the principles are very similar. The main goal is still to inform –  inform about the city, business opportunities, and persuade companies and people to come here to see these great opportunities our city has. Now we have a much broader range of tools to reach foreign audiences. Although it is much easier to reach the audience these days than in the Middle Ages, it is harder to reach the audience, ”said Karolis Žemaitis.

Gediminas’ letters were an invitation to merchants and craftsmen from the Hanseatic cities of Germany. “The principal orientation has not changed, so Germany and Western Europe remain our main market directions for tourism and investors,” said K. Žemaitis.

From text to communication

Nearly 700 years ago, the only form of communication was letters written in Latin language.

“We have a much wider range of tools these days. The channels of communication are very diverse – for tourism we often use social media. For developing our business sector we organize B2B meetings, company visits or international exhibitions where the main focus is the business sector. It is not only the text that is relevant, but the image that creates the impression. Sometimes text is not necessary and a single photo is enough to create emotion. Today’s communication is the communication of feelings and emotions that people share. Sometimes an image is much more important and relevant than a template text

Markets are not just countries but cities

Very often, the main investment markets are not countries, but cities. Multinational companies do not check as much as a country before setting up, but a particular city and it is the city, to which people have potential.

“The advantage of a small country is that the potential talent exchange between Vilnius and Kaunas, in some cases even Klaipeda, creates an advantage for Lithuania as a whole,” says a Go Vilnius representative.

Vilnius is an open and dynamic city

“Duke Gediminas wanted to say the same thing as we want to say it in our time – Vilnius is a changing and dynamic city. We have great potential – objectively, the city is fantastic. We do not need to pretend that the city is attractive because it is. All people who want to create their own well-being or implement their ideas are welcome here. Currently, we have opened the Vilnius Startup Museum in the TAG collaboration space and the main quote that reflects the city is taken from Gediminas’ letters. He is the founder of this start-up called Vilnius.” – said Karolis Žemaitis.