YOUR IDEAL MARKET

Welcome to Your Ideal Market 

  • Recognise overseas markets which have the most potential
  • Understand the factors that make overseas markets easy or difficult to enter
  • Consider how you’ll decide where to put your effort.

A critical decision for any small exporter is the selection of a market in which to start. Often the reasons that a company has for selecting a market can be quite arbitrary – maybe a chance conversation with a colleague or a holiday resulting in the thought that ‘there may be an opportunity for us here’.

However, if you think about it, the selection of a market is too important to be made on a whim. Think through how you’ll decide where you’ll look to get the best return for the effort you put in.

Your Ideal Marketplace

 

Where Do You Start?

A critical decision for any exporter is the selection of a market in which to start. Often the reasons that a company has for selecting a market can be quite arbitrary – maybe a chance conversation with a colleague or a holiday resulting in the thought that ‘there may be an opportunity for us here’.

However, if you think about it, the selection of a market is too important to be made on a whim. Market selection is a really resource decision. You are deciding to invest your time, effort and focus into pursuing the opportunity offered by that market. Logically you want to invest in a market which is going to give you the best return, and where you can trade without over-exposing yourself to risk. For larger markets e.g. the USA, it will probably be helpful to break the market down into smaller ‘chunks’ e.g. West Coast, North West etc.

Step One

Identify the factors that tell you that a market offers potential for your business. These will be different for every business so it is worth thinking hard about. Some of these might be broad (GDP for example), other may be very specific (ownership of boats less than 7 metres for example, or consumption of milk chocolate).

Step Two

Now think about the factors that will make a market easy or difficult for your company. Again this list will be specific to your company and may contain some broad factors (language, distance, for example) and some more specific factors (public sector open to UK products and services, or legal restrictions for example).

Step Three

Identify a shortlist of markets that your instinct tells you could be of interest.

Step Four

Use desk research and networking to refine your understanding of the ‘ease’ and ‘potential’ factors for the markets you are considering. Try and get hold of ‘trend’ information rather than just isolated figures if possible.

Step Five

Select the market or markets you consider most promising for a visit.

tip

Check out The Export Flatplan in The Tool Kit.

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