BEP 398 – English for Sales: Financial Services (2)

BEP 398 LESSON - Sales: Financial Services 2

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson, the second in a three-part series on selling financial services.

When many people think of making money, they think of having a job and earning a salary. But if you’ve ever saved money or made an investment, you know there are other ways to make money. I mean, the money itself can do the work, if you make smart decisions with it. And just as there are lots of ways to invest money, there are lots of words we use to talk about money and investments.

In our last lesson, we were introduced to the world of “wealth management.” And we met a character in the dialog who was “planning for retirement.” These expressions, “wealth management” and “to plan for retirement,” are what we call collocations.

A collocation is a natural combination of words. Proficient English speakers know to use the verb “to plan for” with the noun “retirement.” The words combine to create a collocation, or a set expression. Learning collocations can help you sound more natural, and it can be easier to remember words together, rather than separately.

In today’s dialog, we’ll rejoin Jessica, the person who’s planning for retirement, and Robert, a wealth manager. Jessica is visiting Robert’s office to learn more about his services. And Robert is trying to gently persuade Jessica to become his client. During their conversation, they use many English collocations, which we’ll explain later in the debrief.

Listening Questions

1. What kind of approach does Robert say his firm takes to wealth management?
2. Besides managing investments, what is another service that Robert’s firm offers to people like Jessica?
3. What type of investing does Jessica say she is particularly interested in?

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BEP 390 – English Collocations: Online Marketing (2)

BEP 390 LESSON - English Collocations: Online Marketing 2

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on business English collocations for discussing online marketing.

The world of ecommerce is extremely competitive. Millions and millions of people are shopping online every day, viewing millions of options. How can businesses stand out in this sea of competition? How can they ensure their potential customers can even find their website? They turn to online marketing. So it’s no wonder there’s so much time, energy, and money put into marketing and measuring performance.

If you’ve ever had a discussion with an online marketing expert, you’ll know there’s a whole new language built up around it. Think about an expression like “search engine optimization,” or SEO. That’s a good example of a type of expression that we call a “collocation.”

A collocation is just a group of words that go naturally together to form an expression. You’ve already heard me use a few English collocations. Consider “measuring performance,” as an example. The verb “measure” and the noun “performance” go together frequently and naturally. By looking at collocations you can learn words together, not in isolation.

In today’s dialog, we’ll rejoin Eduardo, Emma, and Neil, who work for a kitchenware retailer. Last time, they discussed content marketing. Today, we’ll hear them talking about search engine optimization and some ways of measuring success. During their conversation, they use many English collocations, which we’ll explain later in the debrief.

Listening Questions

1. At the start of the conversation, what does Eduardo hope has increased?
2. According to Emma, what have they invested a lot in?
3. What does Neil say about their English site that might not be true about the German version?

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BEP 389 – English Collocations: Online Marketing (1)

BEP 389 - Business English Collocations: Online Marketing 1

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on business English collocations related to online marketing.

Every year, ecommerce accounts for an even bigger chunk of retail sales around the world. How big of a chunk? Almost 5 trillion dollars. And with so much selling happening online, it’s not surprising online marketing has become a hot topic.

With this increasing importance has come a ton of new words and expressions. If you find yourself confused, you’re not alone. And as you navigate this new lexicon, it can be very helpful to focus on a type of expression called “collocations.”

Collocations are simply natural combinations of words. For example, you may know that we use the word “traffic” to talk about how many people visit a website. Well, did you know we normally say “drive traffic” when we talk about techniques for bringing people to a website? We don’t say “make traffic” or “move traffic.” It’s not a grammatical rule. It has just become a natural combination of words.

In today’s dialog, we’ll hear Eduardo, Emma, and Neil, who all work for a retailer that specializes in cooking equipment. They’re discussing their company’s online marketing performance. During their conversation, they use lots of English collocations, which we’ll explain later in the debrief.

Listening Questions

1. What does Eduardo regularly do to understand their online marketing performance?
2. What does Neil say is becoming harder, especially with new privacy rules?
3. What does Emma say is not a good technique for reaching younger audiences?

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BEP 382 – Collocations for Discussing a Partnership (2)

BEP 382 – English Collocations for Discussing a Partnership (2)

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on business English collocations for discussing a business partnership.

The expression “two heads are better than one” tells us that it’s easier to solve a problem with someone else rather than alone. This isn’t just true on an individual level. It’s also true on an organizational level. Two companies, if well matched, can accomplish more together than they can alone.

But successful partnerships aren’t developed overnight. There’s a lot that goes into building a relationship, exploring possibilities, and coming to terms on an agreement. And in today’s lesson, we’ll hear a conversation about a new partnership that has taken a lot of time and discussion to develop. In the conversation, you’ll hear many useful expressions that we call “collocations.”

Collocations are simply words that go together naturally. A second ago I talked about “building a relationship.” That’s a collocation. The verb “build” goes together with “relationship” very naturally. Native English speakers learn these combinations over time, by hearing them over and over again. As a language learner, it’s useful to study English collocations so you can sound more natural.

In today’s dialog, we’ll hear Carlos and Miranda talking with a business consultant named Rolland. Carlos and Miranda’s company, Pineview Wines, is about to enter into a new partnership with Visser Hotels. In their conversation they use many English collocations for talking about partnerships.

Listening Questions

1. What does Rolland call the partnership at the start of the conversation?
2. What has a lawyer helped Pineview Wines do?
3. While benefiting from close collaboration, what do Carlos and Miranda want to maintain?

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BEP 381 – Collocations for Discussing a Partnership (1)

BEP 381 – English Collocations for Discussing a Partnership (1)

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on English collocations related to business partnerships.

The world of business is highly competitive. But does this mean companies never cooperate? Of course not! In fact, partnering with other companies can be a great way to achieve your business goals. That might mean cooperating with a company in the same industry or in a completely different industry.

But good partnerships take a lot of work. And before you get to the actual partnership stage, there’s a lot of discussion. In this lesson, we’ll hear a discussion about a potential partnership between two companies. And during this conversation, the speakers use a lot of useful expressions related to partnerships. The type of expression you’ll hear is called a “collocation.”

A collocation is just a natural combination of words. For example, we talk about “cultivating” or “nurturing a relationship.” But we don’t say “make” or “create a relationship.” It’s not a rule of grammar. It’s just a common and natural pattern for native speakers. And if you want to sound more natural, you should learn these collocations.

In today’s dialog, we’ll hear Carlos and Miranda, who work for a wine producer called Pineview Wines. They’re talking with a consultant named Rolland about a possible partnership with a hotel chain called Visser. During their conversation, they use lots of English collocations we can use to talk about partnerships.

Listening Questions

1. What have Carlos and Miranda asked Rolland to sign before their discussion?
2. According to Miranda, fostering collaboration with hotels is a good way for their winery to achieve what goal?
3. What does Rolland emphasize two companies must share in order to work together?

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