Startups may begin small, but the potential to become big cannot be underestimated. Even though managing a small business in itself is a massive undertaking, as an entrepreneur you will need at one point to factor in the global market to realize the maximum potential your business idea holds. Going international extends the range of your potential clients regardless of the size of your business. What’s more? The sales life of your existing products and services in enhanced by having multiple markets to sell them in.
Currently, more than half of the businesses in the US are in one way or another running operations in foreign countries and the trend is not looking to subside anytime soon. To compete, many startups find themselves with no option but to foray into new markets. However, expanding comes with its own set of challenges. Below we have outlined 3 strategies to ease the process and help your company capture global attention.
1. Conduct a Market Assessment
You will need to be strategic about your market choice and analyze the niche of your product with respect to the competitor’s strengths and weaknesses. This will help you pinpoint the right target city or country and from there you will need to consider whether or not your target location is familiar with your products and services or not. If not, be ready to invest both time and money in educating the potential customers.
2. Staff Management: Expand Talent Wise
Most likely, your team will be inclusive of the locals and this requires time and resources to get the entire staff on the same level. This makes hiring very integral to your expansion. Look to ensure that your employees are conversant in both English and the local language. Take a country like Russia for example, where most of the population speaks only the native language. To have a real presence in this and any other similar country, contracting bilingual or multilingual employees is essential. But of course, to save time and money there are many recruiters out with whom you can outsource.
3. Leverage Big Data to Grow Your Business Quicker
Companies are increasingly adopting the use of big data and as a result, the effectiveness of traditional marketing is on a downward spiral. And with big data you can enhance:
- Product quality
- Marketing operations
- Customer relationships.
More than that, you will be able to understand the core of the market and ensure your company is able to market products and services in a more effective way.
4. Consider Partnerships
In certain markets, to navigate the challenges you may have to put the prospect of incorporating a third party on the table. This can be with a larger company or establishing a reseller relationship/referral partner in the target market. Not only will this help you safely test the market before entry but it will also help you sustain your business growth while minimizing expenditure.
The benefits that multinationals bring are hard to ignore and with the right approach, you can turn your business into a success. Just a look at the McKinsey study. According to the findings, at only 1 percent of all companies in the US, multinational rake in around 25 percent of US private sector GDP yearly. And by making inroads into the international market, you stand a chance to more than double your revenue and improve the relevance of your business at home.
That said, you’ll still need to avoid common mistakes that hinder the success of startups both in the local and international markets and upon a careful implementation of the above techniques, your business will move to the next level. On top of that, you will effectively reduce your dependence on the markets in your home country.
About the Author
Charles Dearing is a business consultant and writer who loves sharing his insights on various blogs and online publications. When he is not working he enjoys travelling around the globe.