In Part One of this three part globalization blog series, we looked at the challenges that businesses are faced with as they try to operate in and navigate through an evolving global marketplace. We identified two major hurdles to success – market saturation and product flexibility – and promised to explore possible solutions. Here in Part Two, we examine one creative idea that has helped two companies respond to the issue of market saturation.
The competition is fierce for most businesses in the U.S. market, particularly when the market is saturated with similar products and services. To combat this congestion, companies must begin looking internationally for new opportunities and solutions that might be found beyond their normal comfort zones. Inevitably, this means confronting some intimidating questions:
How do I successfully export my brand to a foreign market?
From an operational standpoint, how can I support my programs globally?
Should I invest in marketing or sales?
Answers to these questions will obviously depend on the product that you’re offering, but intriguing ideas are certainly out there. According to an industry leader in economic development, one global solution that’s gaining a lot of traction among businesses is the development of “sustainable collaborative networks . . . [that] act as breeding environments for the formation of dynamic virtual organisations . . . by pooling their technical and financial resources [in order] to effect market entry.”
As with many other businesses, your ideas may be big, but your capabilities and resources are often local and limited. If your strength is operations and customer service, but you lack overseas experience, then you need to research and locate potential partners with said skills. This may seem obvious, but the truth is that approaching and coordinating with international partners has never been easier or more welcomed. Just because an overseas opportunity seems daunting doesn’t mean it’s unprofitable or unfeasible. It just takes some effort, dedication and foresight. Regardless of how you feel, if you want to survive in the global marketplace and grow your business, these are the types of decisions you may ultimately have to make.
Recognizing this trend, HMI initiated a global partnership with MMI, an FCM travel company, in 2008 to further their overseas capabilities, offering innovative global incentive solutions to multiple high tech equipment manufacturers and service providers. The relationship has been mutually beneficial, and assisted both companies in penetrating markets previously out of reach. While much of the incentives industry still struggles with international capabilities, HMI offers a prime example of how these collaborative networks can distinguish you from your competitors.
Be sure to read Part III: Providing Flexible Incentive Services