“IF THE INTERNET DIDN’T E I DON’T THINK WE WOU - KEVIN ZALEWSKI, LOVEBOO INTRODUCTION Nebraska-based small business Oxbow Animal Health uses the internet to reach customers through chat rooms and blogs worldwide. The Miller family founded the company on their farm in Murdock, Nebraska in 1990 and today employs 150 people, while exporting to 30 countries. The team uses the internet extensively to market to and interface with customers and partners at home and abroad. Global Sales Manager, Lindsay Schmuecker highlights that, “From a marketing perspective, [the internet] has been essential to keeping the brand present overseas and ensuring that our message is cohesive.” Oxbow Animal Health is an example of an increasingly common phenomenon–the emergence of instinctively-global American businesses powered by technology platforms. Online platforms and services are enabling generations of American small businesses, from a century-old clay mining company to a five-year-old cloud-based translation management platform, to create jobs and improve local communities as a direct result of their success in the global marketplace. Established American small businesses and new startup ventures are utilizing a constellation of online technologies – variously including e-commerce and logistics platforms, payments and lending products, and search, marketing and productivity solutions – to facilitate access to new customers and partners outside the United States and run operations on a global basis. This report, based on interviews with entrepreneurs and chief executives across seventeen States, highlights the new faces of American trade, explores the tools that they rely upon to participate effectively in the global marketplace, and emphasizes the impact on their local workforces and communities. “The world is more accessible now than it ever has been; sometimes it’s just not being afraid to reach for the business,” observed Greg Deering, who has been manufacturing unique, high-quality banjos for over forty years in Southern California with his wife Janet and almost 50 employees. Deering, who relies heavily on social media to generate word of mouth among banjo enthusiasts worldwide, added, “Our philosophy is: when an opportunity presents itself, we don’t say no – we grab ahold of it.” 8 Global Innovation Forum