This article is written by Clinton James, a Contributor Author at Startup Turkey.
Marion Gamel is the Vice President of marketing Europe for Eventbrite. She is a certified Executive Coach (WABC), a mentor, a Digital Advisor and a non-executive Director and who specializes in C-suite performance and digital companies experiencing high growth. Speaking at Startup Istanbul’s event, one of the leading startup event globally, she depicts that it is normal for a startup to want to move from local to global but the question is, are you ready? This is because there are risks such as losing focus on your own innovation, losing company culture due to different employees and loss of money and resources in the process.
Therefore, how do we minimize the risk? Businesses or startups need to counter prioritize. Find out who is using your product/service and from where because there are those countries where your services will be needed more than others. Setting country priorities, this includes internal and external data that captures language and maturity. This can be done using the internal data of the company. Look at external data such as size and density of population, internet and mobile penetration, adoption of e-commerce and competition. Compare these factors with the startup’s home country to kind of align the two in order to prioritize which markets to target.
Planning on how to enter the market is also a critical factor. Look at aspects such as taxation, legislation and other local requirements and customs. Make your offering completely locally relevant for the market by localization.
Prepare a long way for your partners. A partner could be a governmental organization, an association, a non-competing similar company and so on. A partner could bring you new businesses and you as a startup could also bring a technology edge, help, for example, they could be interested in entering your homeland. Act fast and hard before turning it on. Make sure you have a public relations tour before you send a ‘SWAT’ team of smart people, because it takes time to build a new MD and workforce in the new region.
How can you enter the market? Think about tax laws, local markets, offices and local banks. Second, localization is about making your business available in a market. This involves understanding about differences. So start talking to your audience and follow their needs and local needs.
Startups need to act fast and strong. The need to act fast comes up because word is already spreading to your competitors about your existence and plan to enter the market. Act strong by carrying out a lot of marketing campaigns and public relations simultaneously and test your product.
Keep testing and learning in order to constantly assess, track and refine your product/service because change is constant and do not focus on doing everything perfectly, be prepared for failures and getting your hands dirty. Learn from the process because globalization does not simply end at one specific market, it is a worldwide affair and you need to be able to adapt to the different markets.