Marking Export Week – an annual event promoted by UK Trade and Investment which focuses on the benefits of global trade – thebigword shares top tips for would-be exporters and asks – are you ready to grow globally?

Research your market
All businesses are different. But whether you’re an established ‘bricks and mortar’ company looking to embrace global e-commerce opportunity or a manufacturer seeking to become the hub of a worldwide supply network the starting point is the same – market research.

whatever your business the starting point is the same – market research

1. Identify your opportunity
There are a number of indicators for measuring a market’s appetite for your product or service. With 40% of the world’s population online, and expansion opportunities within emerging economies, you will benefit from identifying the top languages for online revenue generation.

2. Think about your product or service
While it may be a best seller in your native market, the cultural differences of trading abroad may require some adjustments. Culturally, certain colours, ingredients or brand names can be perceived very differently in foreign markets and should be explored.

You could avoid a faux pas with this useful Institute of Export qualification developed in conjunction with thebigword partner, The International School of Linguists.

Plan your route to market
Once happy that you’ve chosen a market in which you can succeed, it’s time to plan how you will introduce your product or service.

plan how you will introduce your product or service

3. Pinpoint regulations for international trade
Just because your offering is tailored to the target market there’s no guarantee that when shipped, it will make it through customs. Identifying local logistical requirements is a vital step in ensuring that your product reaches your client without undue delays.

4. Consider how you’re going to run distribution
Will you use a partner based in the target country, your own regional office or a mixture of the two? Whichever option you chose, language and company ethos are important considerations. Taking steps to effectively manage your global workforce are vital to ensure that the team you work with overseas is able to function as effectively as the one you have built at home.

Shout about your product
Once you’ve developed or adapted a product or service for your target market, you need to ensure the infrastructure and regulations are in place to guarantee it reaches your target audience – now it’s time to shout about it.

“effective promotion ensures your target audience know about your offering”

5. Get a global website
With some 81% of consumer shoppers now conducting online research before buying – a figure which rises to 94% among B2B buyers – an effective website is a vital tool in promoting brand awareness and trust. Aside from effectively demonstrating your brand values though design and detail – the key marker for any web presence – it’s also vital to remember language. With 75% web users preferring to consume in their own language, if your growth strategy takes you to a territory which does not speak your native language translation is required for a truly global online presence.

6. Promote your offering
Complementing a localised website, a key part of any launch plan is an effective marketing effort. By developing a strategy you will identify the key selling points of your offering and mediums to use, but it’s important to remember the local market. Particularly true when a campaign is to be translated, the value of transcreation – the art of taking a creative message and translating it not solely word for word but as a whole within cultural context – could help to prevent your message being lost in translation.

Blueprint of success
Setting in place a blueprint to grow globally involves careful planning centred on research, market and promotion. It requires a considered understanding of local cultures and market needs – something an experienced language service provider can provide extensive support with.