Monthly Archives: January 2016

Choosing the Right Country in Europe

In the first of our “Go to Europe” series, we discussed the importance of choosing a product that will be successful in the European marketplace. Once your company has committed to that product, you need to decide which country to target. Contrary to popular belief, European countries differ quite greatly from one another in hi-tech markets. For example, if your company has created a new innovation for aircrafts, your product would fit best in France’s growing aeronautics market.

To help you navigate the process of finding the right country to target, we have created a simple five-step checklist:

1. Look at your incoming inquiries

Where are the majority of your website inquiries coming from? If there is an overwhelming amount from a particular country, there is likely a reason for that.

2. Look at your Google Analytics

This feature allows you to see where the top hits on your website come from. Analyze your webpage statistics and try to find common trends in the data.

3. Find your target industries

In which European countries are your target industries? The demand for various industries certainly differs across borders.

4. Reach out to current clients

One of your most valuable channels is your current customer base. They will provide a unique perspective on expansion to Europe, and might even help you introduce your product to the European market.

5. Identify criteria to select the best markets

Understanding what criteria is important for your product will allow you to narrow down the options and focus on certain aspects.

Aside from the tips we have provided, there are many other areas that your company could analyze. Choosing the right country will gateway you to big opportunities, so it is okay to spend a little more time researching each country. For more information go to: http://exportia.com.au/downloads/

Understanding your Product’s Potential in Europe

The European market is thriving with business opportunities, but Australian companies are often intimidated by the cultural differences and barriers to entry. As an international consulting firm, Exportia helps small business in hi-tech industries increase their sales in the European market.

Exportia has created a “Go To Europe” framework for this process through its innovative 7 Pillar model, which includes factors like choosing the right country and developing effective marketing strategies. In the next few weeks, we will walk you through the stages of our framework, beginning with Product.

Pillar #1: Product

One of the major aspects in hi-tech industries is a product’s compliance. It is always easier to pass European certifications if the product has been evaluated at an early stage of development. For a company to become successful, it must have a strong understanding of its product positioning. What problem is the product solving and for which industry? Where does it stand among its competitors? How will it have opportunities to thrive in the marketplace?

A company should first test the uniqueness of its product in its home market. Since the world has become extremely globalized, it is very common that the product will have a niche in Europe as well. Entering the European market isn’t an easy feat, but a company’s greatest market may just as well be there. The best way to prepare is to conduct research and truly understand where a product stands in the market.

Learn more in the Downloads section of our website at: www.exportia.com.au/Downloads

The Key to Success in Europe

A few years ago I made the difficult decision to cease working with a client. I had started exploring opportunities for his company in a European country, visiting end-users, generating initial leads and connecting with potential partners. After making a couple of trips to Europe with him I made several recommendations to take the export project a step further. However, my client was determined to do business in Europe the same way he had in his home market in Australia.

In this instance, the best tactic would have been to partner with a European company that had prior experience responding to government tenders and marketing to buyers in that sector. Unfortunately, I was not able to get my point across to my client; he insisted visiting end-users. For this reason, I decided to terminate our working relationship.

To have any chance of success, businesses – particularly in the high-tech sector – need to partner with companies that are well established in the export market they want to enter. In Europe, doing direct sales involves creating a company, hiring people locally, and being well informed about local laws. Instead, a better approach, especially for new exporters, is to work with European partners or distributors to leverage their expertise, knowledge of the local market and market reach.

Define your ideal distributor profile

Before engaging with distributors or partners you need to define the ideal distributor profile for your business. Start by identifying the profiles of your previous distributors and looking at how they helped your business. To select an appropriate distributor for your business, you need to be very clear about which industry you are targeting and the type of clients associated with that particular industry.

Additional questions to keep in mind while creating your distributor profile:

  • Are they a large company or a small business? Are they regional or nationally based?
  • How broad is their product range?
  • Do they sell to a network of resellers or directly to end-users?
  • What profile do their sales reps have? Do they spend more time on the road or are they in the office preparing marketing campaigns?

Once you understand your customer profile, you will be in a good position to find distributors with this specific clientele in their portfolio as well as those who are already selling products that are complementary to yours. The other important consideration is what role you want the distributor to play for you. You should determine what tasks you want them to do for you in the market besides sales, such as after-sales service, repairs and training.

For more information on selecting distribution channels, download the related tools at http://exportia.com.au/downloads.

Above all, you should aim to work with European partners or distributors to leverage their expertise, knowledge of the local market and market reach.