By Jo Ann Joy
Before you consider entering into the international market, do as much research as you can. It is a whole new world outside the U.S., and it is very easy to make a fatal mistake. The following are just some of the marketing areas that must be considered.
The market entry requirements or barriers to entry. Social or religious limitations that may affect your business. For example, the MGM Grand in Las Vegas had to rebuild its multi-million dollar entrance that was a tiger's mouth, because it was offensive to Chinese customers.
International demographics will undoubtedly be much different from your domestic market. You also need to know the exact market size and be able to conduct effective international market segmentation and international positioning.
This will require you to know the current market, market statistics, and market history.
You must have affordable media strategies for consumer or business-to-business marketing. You need to know about the licensing requirements. You have to find appropriate and affordable channels of distribution within the foreign market that can deliver your product where and when you want it delivered.
You may not have protection of intellectual property in foreign markets (copyright, trademark), and that could be a costly problem. You must carefully examine your product or service to
determine whether there is a profitable international market. Your calculations of cost of goods sold or cost of sales,
pricing, and revenue potential must be accurate in the international market.
Consider whether there are available or a lack of local resources. Also, can you secure enforceable contracts with customers, vendors, and distributors in the foreign market. You need to consider stfing, training, and labor laws in the area. For example, there are very strict labor laws in Europe which make it very difficult to terminate an employee.
You must prepare and effective marketing collateral and global
branding strategy. For example, GMC had to change the name of the car named NOVA in Mexico, because NOVA translated
to "no go." Obviously, that was not a good name for a car.
Learn about international distribution agreements that must comply with foreign laws. Find out if you will need to localize you product or service to make it marketable in the foreign market. Localization is often required in U.S. markets also. For example, Wal-mart had to build horse barns for its store located in the Amish district of Pennsylvania so that Amish customer had a safe place for their horses and wagons while they shopped.
There are other local customs, cultural idiosyncrasies, and mannerisms that must be observed in foreign business. Otherwise you may offend people, and they will not want to do business with you. These cultural diffences will probably be apparent in the negotiating styles. There may even be cultural differences about shaking hands or making eye contact. Also, many other cultures know about American history, and they are insulted if you know nothing about their history.
In additional to the marketing concerns, there are larger concerns about the government and monetary policies in the foreign market you are considering such as:
• Gross domestic product growth
• Per capita income
• Foreign trade risk factors
• Monetary policies
• Trade policies
• Foreign investment policies
• Economic growth
• Political attitude toward U.S. business
• Government stability
• Customs regulations for imports and exports
• Many documents used in international trade
The are so many complicated issues involved in international marketing that they cannot all be addressed here. It is strongly recommended that anyone considering international marketing try to learn as much as possible about business in the foreign market, and hire an international business consultant that has many years experience in that market. To start that process, the following is a list of some good sources of information:
Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
American Citizen Services
Ph: (202) 647-1488, (202) 647-5225
Ph: (202) 663-1225
National Trade Data Bank
Ph: (202) 482-1986
U. S. State Department Background Notes
Department of Commerce
International Trade Administration
Central Intelligence Agency
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce
The U.S. Census Bureau
The Library of Congress
International Electrical Adaptors and Telephone/Modem Adaptors, Magellans’ Travel Supplies
Dun & Bradstreet
Copyright 2006. Indigo Business Solutions is a registered trade name. The future of your business starts here.
About the author
Jo Ann Joy, Esq., MBA, CEO
Indigo Business Solutions
You may contact Jo Ann by phone at (602) 663-7007, by fax at (602) 324-7582, by email at joannjoy@Indigo Business Solutions.net, and by mail at 2313 East Ocotillo Road, Phoenix, AZ 85016
For more information about these and other important business topics and for legal consultation, please visit our website at http://www.IndigoBusinessSolutions.net
Jo Ann Joy is the CEO and owner of Indigo Business Solutions, a legal and business consulting firm. Indigo Business Solutions is a “one stop shop” for small businesses. We differ from other business consulting firms, because we offer comprehensive legal and business counseling. We can offer most of the professional services that a business requires. We work with our clients to develop strategies that create value and competitive advantage.
Jo Ann has a law degree, an MBA, and a degree in Economics, but she is not a traditional attorney. Rather, she is a strategic business attorney who works closely with clients to create and implement strategies that will greatly improve their performance and chance of success. Her background includes commercial and real estate law, accounting, financial planning, mortgages, marketing, product development, banking, and business strategies. She ran a successful business for 10 years, and she has written and given presentations on many different legal and business subjects.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Jo_Ann_Joy
For TradersCity.com help and questions,
Member name: traderscity
Member Since: 02 March 2006
Total Leads: 137 traderscity Import Export Business Leads
Business focus: TradersCity.com Import Export Board Admin
Verify: Safe Import Export Tips