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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Int'l Mktg. Plan Essential to successful exporting

    If you drive down the street with your hands off the wheel you'll go straight until veer off your destination.  The exporter needs a "road map" with an objective and a destination.   A plan may be as simple as contact with an overseas customer or an elaborate representation network for significant market share worldwide.    Do not "just" take an order that appears unsolicited
out of the blue.  It should be part of a "grand? plan which can be one country to region (Latin America).

    A 5 yr goal or a 10 yr objective are usable strategies.   For example - 10 yrs could be targeted for widespread business in the EU.    The 5 yr could be Mexico & Central America or even easier - Canada.   Yes, Canada is an export terr. for U.S. vendors.  For this discussion - focus on a 1 yr and/or 2 yr plan.   Caution:   Care must be taken in not investing excessively up front based on a false premise that payoff will come later.    The plan is generated as sales develop.   Exporting must be self supporting.

Your point is to seek the break even point.   This is frequently the crossroads where exporters fail.   Either the absence of black ink causes faint hearts with resultant abandonment or overspending creats so much red ink that the entire effort creaters out.
So here goes:    1)    Identify a series of mkts. or a single terr. with the focused goal of creating hard orders.    2)    Spend absolute minimal time in research, positioning and re-assessment but seek the most direct route for closing - yes, closing for a signed order.

    Here's the skinny on a 24 month entry into fresh terr:    A)    Target the market!    B)    Try to discover the market where a product similar to yours is already established.    C)    Find the distributor or rep/agent who's is already in your field handling a complementary product to your own - toothbrushes & toothpaste for exmpl.        D)    Now a perfect channel of distribution is in place and your product will flow along in that "river".   Obviously  don't get a competitor.

    From that point you spread out into contiguous markets next door.   Transnational entrepreneurs are always eyeing the "green grass on the other side of the fence" and can well be the springboard to multinational business.   Such "next door" terr. will be similar in nature - EU countries, or Far East/Asia:  the travel to those areas is always more economical as visits can be grouped.    And you will need to visit once you get going - but not until.    Remember - slow on the front money.

By being selective you will  expand advertising & promotion to have greater impact due to similarity of the customer (both ethnic & application).   Avoid a broad front at the beginning of foreign market entry.   Surgical strikes are the sure way to make export sales pay off.   You want help with your marketing plan??   Call:  SCORE  561 981 5180.  Chapter 412 So FL in  Boca Raton

Henry Samuel
Certified SCORE counselor       

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