Setting your business up for international distribution can be a major benefit by opening up new markets all over the world for you to sell your products.
If you’re planning to launch into international distribution for your products, the best route to go is to hire a company that specializes in international distribution to shoulder much of the burden for you. This will give you more time to focus on the day-to-day operations of your business, and save you the headache of doing all the legwork yourself.
But even if you do decide to go with a company that specializes in international distribution, there are some things you should do yourself before and during so that the process goes as smoothly as possible.
You need to carefully choose the company that does your international distribution because that company will be representing you in another country and everything that company does will reflect upon your business. So make sure the international distributor you choose has a good reputation and a lot of experience in the business, or your foreign representative may not be doing your business any favors.
You’re paying your international distribution company good money to do the work of bringing your products to market overseas, so they should also be doing most or all of the legwork. The distribution company should not only cover the costs to bring your product to a worldwide market, but also do the rest. Amongst other services, this should include: sending samples, making important phone calls, producing marketing materials, and attending trade shows.
The company you hire to do your international distribution should also have a good relationship with a reliable network of distributors in foreign countries and make sure that your product will be on the top of their list when supplying retailers. This network of relationships should also include selecting, negotiating and managing local partners to make sure your product is successfully tested and launched in your targeted markets. Don’t forget consulting, managing and overseeing the clearance process for your products in the different markets.
Let’s not forget accountability. Your international distribution company should give you a detailed monthly report on how your product is doing in each market, along with information about how the company is marketing your product and the success of their efforts.
If you’re the type who really likes to do things yourself and be hands-on, you might choose to set up your own international distribution department. Be aware that this will take up a lot of your time and probably involve a lot of learning. This will also mean hiring some staff. Just make sure you hire the right people, both at home and abroad to represent your business and be sure you have enough to not only fund that part of your business, but also pay your employees well so they will show your business at its best to your foreign clients.
If you have the time and energy to put into setting up your own international distribution, then it could be a good route for you. But otherwise, hiring a company that specializes in international distribution is your ticket to success in foreign markets.
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