Estimated reading time: 2 mins
The world is your oyster. If you’re in the business of growing your concerns overseas, the excitement and danger of taking your successful brand and replicating it for a new market is something to embrace.
There are lots of great reasons to expand your business to an overseas market. Firstly, it expands your customer base. A more prominent customer-based and more sales will give you a much greater economy of scale, allowing you much better margins in your current territory. Secondly, your existing customers may not enjoy the novelty of your existing products so much, but a new market might lap it up. Creating a sense of newness, based on success from across the ocean can be a marketing goldmine. Thirdly, having additional territories under your belt can give you a much greater sense of certainty, especially if your current market shows signs of uncertainty.
But of course, it is a considerable endeavour to open up abroad, and it is not something that you should do lightly. Before you even consider jumping into new markets, then you will need to consider a few essential points.
Is Your Current Operation Water Tight?
Before you sail your ideas across the sea, you will need to make sure they can float. If there are any problems in your current operations, you need to iron these out immediately, before scaling these operational problems out to a new market. If you allow yourself to open up, replicating existing problems, then you will never get to rid yourself of them. Make the changes before expanding, and get it right before you commit.
Do Your Research Into The Market
You should always know about the market that you are going into. Who the big-name players are that you should be watching out for, what the market trends are. Read up as much as you can, and find out what plans your potential competitors overseas may have. For example, this luxury conversation will tell you all that you need to know about how Chinese E-commerce giants, Secoo are rewriting the book on creating a monolithic brand.
Understand The History, Customs, Cultures And Laws
There is so much to take in when you open in a new country. There may be a language barrier for starters. Even if you speak the same language, there may be nuances, and things may get lost in translation. You need to know that you are not going to offend your new customers accidentally when you launch your marketing campaigns, knowing what the collective sense of humour is like is vital.
Laws will differ from country-to-country, and you will need to make sure that none of your products or services will fall foul of these laws.
Taxes And Tariffs
You’ll need to pay your way when you get there. Make sure you understand how their tax system works, and make sure you factor the taxes entirely when you create your business plans. You may find that there are barriers in place to favour their homegrown businesses over foreign enterprises. This may be frustrating and potentially costly. However, it is something that you will have to live with.