Small Business Owner? Think Globally!

March 20, 2013 | By More


 

I experience often that company owners think locally. They start a business with the intend to serve the market they know and they feel comfortable in. However much depends on proper market research. How many people are actually available in your neighborhood that require your product or service? Who is your competition and what is their market share? Is what you offer superior to what they have? Just a few things to consider. At the end of the day a functional business comes all down to numbers. It does not matter how hard you work, when there is just no one interested in what you sell. You just won’t make any income or very little.

small business owner expand globallyRemember the amount of your income is directly connected to the amount of marketing, lead generation and eventual the conversion rate into a sale. Anyhow, if one of the numbers does not come up correctly you need to make sure that you can produce more leads through market expansion. No matter if you have a start-up or realize later on you want to expand, it makes sense to think globally right from the get go.

It is easy to think worldwide nowadays, just a simple website has the ability to reach global recognition, it just depends how well the page is optimized and found by people searching for what you have to offer. However entering the international market can also be challenging if you have a product which needs approval before it can be imported. Expansion of your business to global recognition can happen in different ways and depends on what you are trying to sell. Here are a few ideas.

 

  1. Create a Brand

    Take Starbucks for example. They sell coffee. While there are multiple coffee shops worldwide, they have created a system and brand strategy which has made them the leader in selling coffee. Everybody likes coffee, it is a huge market, but nonetheless many coffee shops fail, because they do not understand their market properly. You can bet that Starbucks always has been and will do their market research on population, drive through traffic and median income, before they open another store. But you can be sure more markets will be discovered and more Starbucks will open their doors in the future. Diversification also warrants that if one location is not a success it can be shut down without the brand having to disappear.

 

  1. Franchise

    A Franchise is a great way to get name recognition and at the same time limit the risk of a failing location. Most likely you give your brand name, your system and expertise to someone who wants to enter into a proven business opportunity. You provide the idea, the products or services and duplicate a proven strategy. The initial investment is made by the person buying the idea; you collect a franchise fee and likely a percentage of the monthly revenue.

 

  1. E-Commerce

    Amazon, Ebay, to name a few, even large retail chains like Best Buy, Target, Walmart all have a strong online store. People like to have time to research and review an item, buy it from the convenience of their home. Internet shopping has and will even more explode in the future. So why not taking a share and take your product or service online. You have a company with instant Global reach.

     

  2. Business Partners in other Countries

    Find strategic located business partners in other countries who are able to duplicate your local success. You can keep control and at the same time you expand your business internationally. You also make sure that the person knows the local market and business etiquette, assuring the best way to infiltrate a product or service. Much depends on location and the way business works in another country. There are many stories about companies who tried to apply the same approach which made them successful locally, but the same just did not work in another market. Consider a partner or hire an expert for the specific market you want to enter in to.

 

The above are just a few possibilities to build your business globally, there are many others. As a business consultant I do like to talk about just the once are proven to work. Some Products just go everywhere; think about the cell phone industry. No matter how poor people are, they somehow manage to have a cell phone. The moral of selling therefore is to create the desire for the item and the product will sell itself, because it becomes a basic human need like food and water.
 

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Category: Management related, Starting and building a business

carsten@officentos.com'

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