One of the most common hopes that I hear expressed is 'we just need a PO to get going'. Companies that are looking for their first sale or contract to generate enough revenue to sustain expansion into a new country are more often than not doomed to fail.
A surprising, but not uncommon, market entry fail is when companies expand to a new territory and are not clear about what they are trying to achieve, nor have an approach that defines tactical objectives and a clear estimate of the costs of the exercise. It's an approach which is entirely, 'Let's start and see".
Following on from my previous post, the second typical fail I frequently see in international expansion across many business sectors is what we call "Trying to be All Things To All People". Generally this is an error that happens when companies have not taken the required time to study the foreign market they are looking to enter and they have no focus.
I recently returned from participating in the Catalyst Seminar Speaking Tour in India. My slot was on how to drive commercial success when entering a foreign market. Working with companies from all over the world, of differing sizes and from different sectors, we see recurring themes in international expansion that cut across these including common issues, typical mistakes, as well as formulas for success. Here, I'm going to share five major mistakes that we encounter time and time again which can put a company's foreign market entry at risk and typically lead to failure and financial loss.