7 Strategies for Manufacturers Expanding into North American Markets
For manufacturers considering expanding into North American markets, the thought of doing business in other countries can be daunting. However, manufacturers from around the world are devising business strategies to make the move each year to expand into Canada and the U.S.
In a survey conducted by HSBC, respondents from 9,100 companies around the globe, reported that 11 percent of business leaders identified Canada as an attractive market for expansion, right behind the United States, the most desirable destination, at 14 percent. In addition, international businesses have confidence in Canada due to favourable partnership opportunities and proven customer demand. Almost 29 percent of respondents viewed Canada as a gateway to nearby markets.
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As a foreign business looking to expand globally, there are a series of steps to consider before you take the leap into unknown territory. Follow these 7 business strategies for manufacturers to kick start your expansion plans into North America.
7 Business Strategies for Manufacturing Businesses to Go Global
International Business Plan
Before venturing into international markets, companies should draft an International Business Plan. The plan will help with goal setting, resource allocation, product preparation and more. The plan can be divided into sections which include: Export Diagnostics, Market Selection, Market Entry Methods, International Trade, International Promotion & Strategy, and the Economic Plan.
When choosing business markets, it’s best to conduct foreign market research. The Department of Commerce is an excellent source of information on foreign markets for U.S. goods and services. To obtain a good idea of pricing, research competitors online and determine what they charge for similar products. This will help you to understand local pricing policies and the level of competition in your industry.
There are various methods of distributing products abroad. Whether opening company-owned foreign subsidiaries, working with agent representatives or setting up joint ventures, be sure to select the best method for your business. Keep in mind the nature of relationships has changed, especially since the pandemic, putting more emphasis on e-commerce transactions. Companies are using marketing and sales tools to create relationships. They can help prospects get to know, like and trust companies, their products, and people. Businesses can facilitate a sale without ever meeting in person.
Cultural, social, legal, and economic differences make exporting a challenge for business owners who have never operated outside of their home country. When looking to expand into North American markets, it’s imperative to understand the differences between cultures. This is important when setting prices, negotiating deals and communicating the product offering to your audience.
Funding your expansion is a top priority when looking to expand globally. Tap into government grants and resources where you can. It’s easier than you think to get the financial support you need.
Local Business Network
Connecting with the right business partners who understand the local market is important for business growth in global markets. Identify key partners ahead of the move including distribution partners, tax lawyers, accountants, and marketing agency support to be your hands and feet on the street.
Brand & Promotion
Establishing a business brand in a new market requires work. Ensure you have done a competitive analysis so that you can position your products appropriately in each market. The business brand may need a refresh to be viable in North America. You may need to revisit your brand story and what makes it unique in a competitive market-place. A digital marketing and social media strategy will be key in building awareness, business strategies and gaining traction into new markets.
If North American expansion is in your business’s future, connect with a local partner that is focused on business growth and can become an extension of your team. At 360 Integral Marketing, we’ll provide you with an actionable plan that will set you up for success in any market you choose.