How to internationalize your company in the internet age

Once the decision has been taken to enter foreign markets there are several options to establish your company in the new market. It’s going to be a great adventure!

Your options
1. Building a localized website AND opening local with an expat or local workforce
2. Just building a localized website and having an account manager deal with the market remotely

There are more options, but I am keeping it simple here.

-Option 1 is very involved. It takes a lot of preparation, a business plan, hiring local staff, relocating a expat, establishing a local office and a warehouse. Building a local website and creating a local Adwords campaign
-Option 2 is the cheaper option. Just translating the home market website and an Adwords advertising campaign.

Start online
Sometimes there is no other option than to go for option 1 and open that local office. But generally it is better to go growth hacking and to just start the webshop and the advertizing. Say you are going from a small European country to the USA. A manned office easily costs 30 K Euro per month. Throw in an Adwords campaign and its another 10 K. Just built a website for say 5.000 Euro’s one time plus 10 K for Adwords to drive visitors to your site and you are saving 355 K per annum. Just building the web site may seem like a slow start. But you can start analyzing your website after few months and find out in what starts there is most interest for your products. The website will generate leads which will convert in customers. Building relationships with clients will be great for understanding the market.

The next level
Once there are 20 plus customers there is much greater knowledge of the market plus a revenue stream which will pay for a local office. This step will then naturally flow out of a web only approach.

The next article will be a how-to of creating a local website