If you run a successful business in your town, city or region, but you feel you’ve achieved all you possibly can, maybe it’s the right time to think about casting your net a little wider – maybe overseas. By expanding your business, further success could be coming your way.
Having spoken to a business owners who have successfully expanded their businesses, here are their recommendations on taking your business to new frontiers:
Stay true to the things that made you successful at home
If the reason you’re thinking of expanding is because of the success you’ve enjoyed at home, then when you expand and start selling internationally, stick with the things that got you to this point – whether it’s value, service, speed – replicate this going forward.
If you’re expanding overseas into a territory you’re not familiar with, just be mindful of other cultures and ways of life. Make sure what you’re proposing to offer is right for that community, and if necessary, hire someone who knows the area to give you their expert opinion – will your brand, message and product fit that culture? Avoid causing offence with the wrong choice of colours or slogans.
Shout about it
How will people find out about your product? Utilise social media sites to create some sort of buzz and encourage word of mouth. Spend some money in the local press or on TV or radio, being sure to target the right people – who will buy your product or service, and why? Answer these questions and then go after them.
Also think about SEO (search engine optimisation) and PPC (pay-per-click) advertising.
SEO is the process of using keywords and other methods to give your website better visibility in a search engine’s search results. PPC is a form of advertising which directs traffic to your website – every time someone clicks on your ad, you pay the website owner. On a search engine, this will usually involve bidding on keywords that are relevant to your business’s target market.
Here come the cavalry
Just how big are you going to get? Make sure you have the staff to deal with the increased workload – what some people like to do is hire just a handful of extra staff at first, and then build a larger team around this smaller group that you can trust. Of course, this depends on the size of the company and the scale of the growth.
Also consider your online offering, especially if this is crucial to your success. Will your website cope with the extra traffic? – get the experts to make sure there won’t be an embarrassing situation on day one when your website crashes.
The costs of growth
Hopefully it won’t be long before your new staff start paying for themselves, but it’s not just the cost of staff you have to think about. Offices, licenses, factories and production facilities and IT will all cost money. Make sure you’ve accounted for everything in your costs and forecasts.
Get the best deal on your currency exchange
World First will help you through this transition by ensuring you get the best exchange rates when importing, exporting, paying staff overseas, paying suppliers or repatriating your profits. Speak to one of our team for more information. Currency hedging will help protect you against fluctuating exchange rates, while also allowing to benefit if they go in your favour.
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