There is no single way to overcome the challenges to new market entry. Conversely, those challenges/obstacles should be determined before products or strategies are developed, to prevent substantial expenditures in the midst of entry. Once you understand which obstacles/challenges must be tackled, you determine how to overcome them. In a rush to move things along, many organizations fail to recognize the importance of carefully evaluating challenges before jumping all in.
Carlos Escobosa commercial and administrative director of The Residences at Solaz says that in Mexico, where an important percentage of sales are directed to foreign buyers north of the border “the biggest external challenge is the negative perception that North Americans have of Mexico. The best way to overcome negative perceptions is through PR campaigns focused on the value, security of investments, and levels of capital being invested. In addition, there is often an internal lack of knowledge of what a consumer wants or needs in our industry (Travel & Leisure and recreational Real Estate)”. Cindy Collins founder of Mining Technology Partners told us that “the approach for us would be the same as it was in coming into a new territory in our market of mining & metals. Except now we have greater access to online resources such as advertising, SEO marketing and so on. We are working to take advantage of this … with a new website, podcast and other content. This is in addition to face to face meetings…it is more than about effective marketing, it comes to relationships”.
Rahul Samant CEO of Rehabtronics stated that “…the biggest challenges include regulatory, sales, distribution, and marketing. Typically to overcome these we enter markets where we have first established a strong sales and distribution partner that understands the local issues in this context”. Alejandro Godoy founder of Seafood Business Solutions adds that “entering new markets is all about understanding the demand. But on the other hand, explaining and demonstrating your product and its benefits in comparison to others” is key.
The research and development phases of a project often seem protracted, but it is essential to prepare and take your time to do it right. As noted above, the key issues to keep in mind for overcoming barriers are marketing, a clear understanding of demand, and relationship building.
Each organization has its own way of navigating areas of opportunity. Some companies are well versed in entering new markets, have strong processes and count on the necessary resources to do so effectively. For many others, hiring a consultant the most effective way to define specific challenges and design a strategy for tackling them. The avenue offers a way to overcome a lack of initial internal capacity within an organization, and support capacity building in an effective way; while continuing to move forward with the due diligence required for new market entry. In addition, consultants can assist in overcoming sensitive subjects, as they can bring an impartial opinion and an unbiased eye, as is mentioned in an article by Alex Nuth titled “Why Companies Really Hire Consultants” .
In a nutshell, taking the necessary time and doing your homework will minimize risks and maximize results.
This article is part 3 of 3.
In case you missed Part 1: Top 4 Challenges to Business Development.
In case you missed Part 2: How important is it to develop strategic relationships and contacts inside target markets?