We know extremely well what companies do best when entering new markets. Out of all the companies we have been advising over the past 30 years about how to capture the European market, each and every one already had a strong product or service portfolio in place. Most of them were even already operating very successfully in their original marketplace. The most frequent question we heard concerned an adopted go to market strategy and how to develop new talent and skills to manage cultural differences. Both topics were identified as key drivers to be successful in an unknown market place with unknown regulations and compliances.
Your products or services may well be superior and many people may already know your brand in your home market. In Europe, however, you experience difficulties to get your product to market. We have seen this phenomenon many times before and in many ways, with companies coming from all around the world approaching the European market.
Sometimes it is the way people react to new products and services; sometimes it is the challenge to identify potential partners to do business with. Organizations usually benefit from localized professionals who know the market and know how to develop business within that market.
Talent and skills are important to market a product or service and to gain stakeholder confidence. Most of the organizations we have been supporting with their long-term projects started with a comprehensive sales representative office in Europe. It was interesting to see that even global players would not start with a big-bang approach. All market entry strategies, and especially those approaches from organizations coming from APAC, were carried out in a very careful manner. In the end, all of the companies with a holding abroad were able to establish an astonishing mix of talent developed in Europe and talent imported from their existing mature markets. Sharing knowledge has been one of the key drivers to successfully grow their business in Europe.