Devising International Marketing Plan

25th November 2021 0 By indiafreenotes

Creating an effective international marketing plan requires details about each country in which your company wants to sell products or services. Many of the sections in an international marketing plan look similar to a local marketing plan, but that’s where the similarities end. For instance, the objectives section might include marketing penetration goals or building brand awareness, but they need to be tempered with a careful look at each country’s local situation.

Objectives

This section explains the objectives of selling your product in a foreign market so you know how many resources you need to commit. The objectives may include reaching a certain return on investment or introducing your product to help buyers in the new market become familiar with your brand. Your company also may want to gain a share of the market due to increasing competition in that country from other companies selling similar products.

Situational Analysis

Outline the opportunities your company sees in selling products and services in other countries. Your plan should present an analysis of the culture of the country and the political and economic conditions that indicates the country supports foreign companies. Include research about the target market, such as the income level required for consumers to afford your offering. Examine each country’s unemployment and inflation rates, and explain how they may affect sales.

Operations

The operations section of the marketing plan explains how your company will work with other departments, such as manufacturing and distribution, to get your product into the hands of buyers. Explain how you plan to handle logistics, transportation and warehousing challenges unique to each country in getting your product to market, and outline how you will deliver the product to retailers to sell in their shops.

Localization

Explain your promotional efforts, and indicate whether you plan to stick with one message for your product no matter what countries you sell it in or how you plan to localize your message to fit each country. You may need to break the message down further by using specific messages that apply to each region within a country. Outline any new branding needed to meet the cultural or economic expectations of each localized area in which you plan to sell your company’s offerings.

Pricing

Your plan should provide details about your pricing structure and explain how it differs from country to country if that’s your strategy. Note factors that influence the pricing, such as import tariffs and shipping requirements. This section also covers how you set your prices based on what the market can bear in that country. Describe your competition’s pricing as well as how the product value is perceived by your target market.

Tracking

Include a method for frequently reviewing your plan to identify changes in the political or economic environment. That way, you can swiftly make adjustments to stay on track with your company’s marketing objectives and get the product to end users with as little interference as possible.

Strategies:

Focus on the customer

Yes, this sounds easy. But as a marketer, you know the customer relationship is key. Not all customers want the same thing. They all have different needs and wants, and the marketer must address those needs moving into the global market.

Make sure time is spent with new customers, and get to know them, just as you would with a domestic customer. Understand their needs, their environment, and most importantly, their challenges.

Have a great staff

The four P’s rear their ugly head again! And here the key word is people. Every person in your company, and the international chain, must be experienced and have the company’s objectives in mind. New global employees should know the global market well, and be able to assist with any language or cultural issue that arises. A company can work with international trade associations to find suitable people. Remember to network!

Understand different cultures

In the global marketplace a company must expect to work with many different people, who often speak different languages and have different cultural ideas. Knowing this ahead of time is the best way to form trusting relationships. If possible, learn the local language, or at least some key words. Become knowledgeable about the local culture. It will help show that you have a commitment to them.

Act Local

Even if the business is U.S. based, find opportunities to act local. A promotion campaign in the U.S. won’t work in another country. Some languages don’t translate easily, like English and Japanese. So be sure to work with locals to help you bridge these cultural divides.

Competing globally can be challenging at first, especially when you are working through the cultural divides. Investing in the areas will help foster a relationship of trust with your partners and employees. Ultimately, this trust will help the company excel in the global market.

The marketer will want to focus on three items:

  1. Completion date: The marketer must set a date for when the plan should be completed. It can be a long process, involving many people and departments. So, it is key the marketer has a goal end-date.
  2. Who is responsible: Each member of the marketing team should have a defined role, which they should clearly understand and be prepared for. They must be responsible for their part; otherwise, the plan will never come together.
  3. The budget: A marketing plan can cost a lot of money, so establish a budget and stick to it. You don’t want to end up with no money, and have to finish the marketing plan without funds.