6 Steps for Building a Successful Export Strategy

  1. Start an Export Market Expansion Program
  1. Organize the Program
    Designate program leaders and export teams. Summarize baseline company and export history.
  2. Benchmark Company Preparedness
    Conduct an export benchmark assessment. Summarize significant findings and define action steps that will need to be implemented.
  3. Define Export Outcomes
    Determine your company’s rationale for expanding exports. Develop long-term program and financial objectives that will define the program’s intended destination.
  4. Evaluate Start-up Results
    Periodically assess progress toward achieving results and identify needed adjustments.
  1. Target High-Potential Export Markets
  1. Select Best-Prospect Products
    Assess products with export potential for hurdles that might be encountered—export, import, sales, use and other hurdles. Select and prioritize best-prospect products.
  2. Develop EPO and Resource Network
    Identify export promotion organizations (EPOs), establish working relationships, inventory available services and coordinate EPO’s resources with the company’s resources. Select services to be used.
  3. Target High-Potential Markets
    Establish market selection indicator screening criteria. Scan literature. Collect relevant data, information and opinion. Analyze, screen and select the highest potential markets.
  4. Evaluate Targeting of Markets
    Evaluate targeting of high-potential markets.
  1. Build Export Market Expansion Plans
  1. Determine Market Entry Methods
    Review market entry method options. Assess options in relation to target and ROW markets. Select the most appropriate market entry methods for each market.
  2. Select Market Segments and Distribution Channels
    Research target markets to identify potential market segments and channels of distribution. Analyze and determine the appropriate channels of distribution. Match and select priority segments and channels. Develop profiles of preferred distribution channel partners.
  3. Determine Product, Price and Promotion
    Research target market to identify competitors. Analyze competitors’ products, market segments served, channels of distribution, trade and payment terms, price and promotions. Analyze price and terms options. Develop competitive positioning.
  4. Develop Target Market Profiles
    Profile each target market. Summarize market segments, channels of distribution, competitors and company’s products, prices and promotions to be offered in each market.
  5. Finalize Export Market Plans
    Define current activities. Summarize findings and assumptions. Establish objectives and strategies. Forecast sales and expenses for each market.
  6. Evaluate Export Market Expansion Plan Results
    Review the sales and other objectives for the target and ROW markets. Determine the degree to which each objective was achieved. Develop adjustments in the export plan.
  1. Build an Effective Export Organization
  1. Refine Export Processes and Policies
    Develop a flow chart of export processes. Adjust processes to improve efficiency and accommodate accelerated volume of business. Develop plans for improving coordination. Adjust policies and processes to accommodate accelerated export activity.
  2. Develop Export Team and Expertise
    Designate a company-wide export team. Identify units and positions with export-related tasks. Inventory the skill and training needs of the staff. Schedule and initiate in-house and outside training opportunities.
  3. Select ESO Network
    Identify the types of export service organization (ESO) services that will be required. Identify and screen potential ESOs. Establish a profile of the preferred type of provider for each service needed. Assess and select the ESOs.
  4. Obtain Required Approvals
    Identify the mandatory and voluntary approvals available. Comply with approval requirements.
  5. Internationalize Communications and Materials
    Develop guidelines for internationalizing the company’s communications and materials. Identify materials, specify changes to be made in the materials and develop an implementation schedule.
  6. Plan Promotional Event Participation
    Identify target market and global trade shows and other promotional events. Assess the options and select the events in which the company will participate. Start planning for participation in the events.
  7. Develop First-Contact Methods
    Determine the type of first-contact methods to be used in each target market. Develop the first-contact materials to be used. Identify sources of contact information. Schedule activities.
  8. Develop Distribution Partner Response Process
    Organize an initial screening process for distribution partner inquiries. Plan the response actions to be used and develop the response communications and materials.
  9. Develop Sales Response Process
    Organize a screening process for sales inquiries. Plan the response options to be used and develop the response materials.
  10. Evaluate Build Export Organization
    Evaluate the degree to which the build export organization results were achieved.
  1. Build a Successful Export Distribution Network
  1. Recruit Distribution Partner Candidates
    Prepare for participation in promotional events. Implement the promotional activities and participate in promotional events. Recruit distribution partner candidates. Assess and evaluate the promotional activities and events.
  2. Screen and Select Preferred Distribution Partners
    Initially screen and respond to distribution partner inquiries. Screen and select best-prospect partners. Qualify and select high-potential partners. Assess and select preferred distribution partners.
  3. Finalize Distribution Partner Agreements
    Visit the preferred distribution partner and market. Establish mutual expectations. Negotiate distribution partner agreements. Finalize agreements.
  4. Evaluate Export Distribution Network Results
    Evaluate the degree to which the export distribution network modules were achieved.
  1. Build Profitable Global Export Sales
  1. Initiate Export Sales Activities
    Prepare for participation in sales promotional events. Implement sales promotional activities. Solicit sales inquiries. Assess sales promotion events and activities.
  2. Screen and Respond to Export Sales Inquiries
    Screen inquiries for potential sales opportunities. Determine types of responses. Establish terms and prices. Prepare sales quotes and responses.
  3. Finalize Export Sales
    Negotiate final sales terms and prices. Examine purchase orders and payment documents. Accept and acknowledge orders. Finalize any financing arrangements.
  4. Prepare and Ship Export Orders
    Schedule any pre-inspections and crate order. Book shipment of order. Obtain required documents. Prepare commercial and other documents and filings. Collect on cash-in-advance sales. Deliver order to carrier.
  5. Collect on Export Orders
    Collect on letter of credit, documentary collection and open account methods.
  6. Evaluate Export Sales Results
    Evaluate export sales, shipping and collection results.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Source: www.shippingsolutions.com

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