How do Newcomers Develop Market Based on its Features? Leave a comment

Case

I just graduate from school and enter the foreign trade department of a factory. The main products of the factory are mechanical equipment and parts. It was domestic sales and also received orders from some foreign trade companies. But now the company set up a foreign trade department and do business directly with foreign customers. Thus, the company asks us to use various channels to open up foreign trade market. At the same time, we also need to cooperate and implement some foreign trade company orders. But I have no idea of market development. What should I do?

Introduction

In the foreign trade industry, salespeople with customer resources and orders are the most popular. With such a salesman, the company can quickly realize profits. However, if it is a newcomer, the company needs to train him before it can produce benefits. For newcomers, it is vital to learn and master the methods of developing the market and customers. This is a key indicator of the core competitiveness of foreign trade people. And it is the ability that foreign trade people should pay attention to most.

Step 1

To open up a market, you first have to segment your customers. Different industry features determine the difference between customers. For example, in the large mechanical equipment industry, you must first know who uses your products. Assuming that they are used by paper mills, then you need to know whether your equipment is a general-purpose device or a  special one. If it is a general-purpose device, you need to see if it is purchased directly by customers or by the general contracting engineering company. If it is a general device, each product is different. It may also involve design, which is more different from the sale of general products. The preparation may be technical.

Step 2

After segmenting your target customers, you need to know customers’ procurement channels. Some foreign companies have branch offices or joint ventures in China. It may be easier for you to talk with foreign customers through them. But you need to know in advance the positioning and functions of those branches.

For example, many steel companies in India have offices in Beijing. But their main purpose is to sell steel products and buy cokes. Sometimes, with the requirements of the headquarters, they will also participate in the procurement of some equipment, materials, and parts. If you want to sell coke or buy steel, you are right to find these subsidiaries. In other cases, even if they are interested in your company’s products, it is not their duty. You can only ask them to hand over some information or samples to the departments they need, or to introduce your products to colleagues at headquarters. Therefore, finding the right contact is a key part of successful marketing.

In many large foreign companies, the purchasing department can make inquiries and determine the price. However, when it comes to the confirmation of technique or drawing, the technical department or the quality department has discourse power. People in the quality department can assess product performance, quality, life span, etc. Sometimes they have greater discourse power than the purchasing department. Therefore, the quotation is generally divided into two parts. One is the technical quotation, and the other part is the commercial quotation.

As far as the mechanical and electrical industry is concerned, it is not pure price comparison, involving many parameters, performance, technical indicators, and so on.

Step 3

After learning about the target customers and channels, the next step is to choose the proper way to market. There are great differences between different products, customers, and countries. You can only take targeted marketing methods according to the different features of customers.

For example, mechanical products are sold abroad as part of a certain piece of equipment. Now that three years have passed, you think the parts are going to be replaced. Then you can get some information about the current user or the supply channel through the original equipment supplier, and then contact.

There are many exhibitions and promotional meetings in the machinery industry. Although good and bad mixed together, exhibitions will still bring together many customers and peers. If you have the opportunity to participate to know some customers and industry trends, it will be good for you to develop your business.

Besides, even if your company has its foreign trade qualification, you must take the inquiry and order seriously. Whether it is a direct international customer or an order from a foreign trade company, it is your customer resource. Even large companies receive orders directly from foreign customers as well as from foreign trade companies. Although foreign trade companies taking orders will increase the cost of customers, sometimes doing business not just determined by the price. The long-term relationship, trust, channel stability, risk control are also important to customers.

In your current work, cooperating the performance of orders with foreign trade companies is also one of the tasks. Through these jobs, you can learn a lot of knowledge. Also, cherishing the existing customers with excellent service is of great help to your business development.

Suggestion

It is also a good way to build your own company’s website or join some website platforms, such as Alibaba and eBay. You can learn about the situation of some foreign customers. There are indeed many companies doing businesses through these platforms, but not that you definitely can find the right customers through them. To find the proper order, you must consider your product features, the company features plus customer purchasing habits, and then choose the appropriate marketing method. It is unlikely that GE will find suppliers in these ways. If your target customer is like this, you won’t have a chance even if you spend a large amount of time on these platforms.

Some large foreign companies often put information about bidding or procurement on their company websites. This information is still credible. And communication is also direct. Even if it is not necessarily successful, you can learn a lot by attending these competitions.

Conclusion

When newcomers enter the company, they often encounter a wrong region that they focus on orders but ignore the performance. They put a lot of effort into developing customers and new markets. But the orders are really coming, and their tracking and control are not strong enough. Delivery, quality, packaging and many other aspects are different from customer requirements. So, when developing customers and markets, you need to have an accurate understanding of your company’s abilities. Don’t boast when you confirm with your customers. Otherwise, the problem occurring in a big contract will cause great loss and damage to the company.

There is no way to make you open up a vast market overnight. Only with patience and perseverance can you find the most suitable way to develop your customers and market in practice.

 

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