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Taking your product or service beyond our shores

Exporting a product or service beyond the home country can be an exciting development, opening up new opportunities and revenue streams. As one may expect, exporting a product or service to a totally new market requires significant strategic efforts and no small amount of homework. We sit down with Daniel Scicluna, Sales and Marketing Partner at MYC, to discuss some tips to consider before taking the plunge towards exporting.

Establish where your product or service can be sold

The important decision of launching in a new market needs to be backed by extensive and reliable research. This may require the development of some form of quantitative research to gauge the market and see how it would respond to the offering. Part of the research needs to delve into the existing competition, how relevant would the product be, the economic landscape, demographics and cultural aspects. Once the selected market is chosen, the next phase may commence.

Planning

A successful outcome or otherwise will heavily depend on the level of planning. For one thing, before launching into a new market, a business must consider its existing resources. It is useless to launch in a new market, gaining enquiries, and not be able to service potential clients. This illustrates that one of the first important matters to address is whether the business has enough employees to manage the new volumes of enquiries and clients. If not, the business will need to consider a prudent recruitment strategy.

Another necessary matter to consider is that of packaging. Simply replicating what exists in the home country might not be the right approach. This depends on the market that you are targeting and what type of packaging or design appeals to it. There is also the legal aspect that a business would need to consider, such as additional disclaimers to be placed on the labelling if applicable.

One must also consider familiarity with the new market and existing knowledge that will benefit the strategy. 

Hitting the market

There are different ways how an organisation can spearhead its go-to market strategy. The business may opt to have its own representatives on the ground within that market. It might opt to use distributors or sales agents who would not be employed with the company. A business may also opt for a joint venture, joining forces with another company that can complement its service offering. Irrespective of the options chosen, responsibilities must be clearly assigned including those related to payments, deliveries and general service offering. Quite necessary as well, is the protection of intellectual property, which is why it makes sense to address all legal formalities prior to the launch.

Seek opportunities

Part of the launch should include a plan for sales opportunities. Being within a new market requires constant commitment to look out for sales opportunities to increase revenues. This can include participation in events and conferences.

Marketing

The strategy for marketing will influence the success of the project. Depending on the market, offering and objectives, the strategy will need to be developed. When it comes to marketing, a mixture of channels can be used. When dealing with a new market, an integrated marketing strategy could be worthwhile, as the data gathered would help to determine the best channels to reach your objectives.

The lessons learnt from tapping into one market will serve well if the organisation opts to expand into further territories. If you would like to learn more about implementing an international strategy targeting several markets, speak to Daniel and the team, by sending an email on [email protected]

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