Maarten de Jeu is a business advisor and entrepreneur who established SVM Business Advisory. His company, based in Chicago, Illinois, provides strategic advice to clients around the world. His professional background includes commercial real estate investment, financial services, and doing business on the international level. Before starting his consulting firm he worked for TVDK Management Consultants and Aviva Plc.
Having introduced brands to companies around the world, Maarten de Jeu says it’s not as simple as just taking a product and selling it in another country as is. There are many factors to take into consideration for a product launch to be successful. This starts with a commitment to quality. People form a first impression very quickly and if a product isn’t of high quality they won’t buy it.
Companies going into another country need to be respectful of differences in culture and language. He suggests hiring someone who natively speaks the language. They will translate everything on the product box, marketing, product directions, and so on. This avoids embarrassment for getting the language wrong. A native speaker will avoid American idioms that don’t translate to other languages.
A company needs to show it is dedicated to a country’s market. Maarten de Jeu says that if a company doesn’t appear to be standing behind its product and in it for the long-haul they won’t get customers. A great way of showing dedication is hiring local people. Bringing in existing employees won’t be perceived as dedication.
Following accepted business practices is very important. This starts with creating a business plan. Companies doing business in the United States might be able to get by without a business plan, Maarten de Jeu says, but that just won’t work internationally. This plan should include hiring practices, where raw materials come from, who the product’s customers are, and how introducing a product in another country will work. Learn more: https://about.me/maartendejeu
Selling a product in another country requires a lot of capital and time. Maarten de Jeu says that the owners of businesses need to be patient and take a long-term view. If the owner doesn’t have enough capital to launch a product on their own, they will need to get investors or business loans. Being properly capitalized will help a company realize how great globalization can be for their revenue.
Last, he says to remain flexible. Product design, the business plan, and advertising strategies may need to be adjusted to achieve success. Maarten de Jeu says that business owners need to be willing to accept even drastic changes if they are required. The owner should find a balance between their different goals and how to achieve them.