As a business owner, you know when it’s right to expand your business globally. However, when you expand your business globally, it comes with a lot of opportunities, potential customers, and obstacles.
Apart from growing as a business, it also helps you understand the global market and enables you to grow as an individual too. So, if you want to mark your presence at a worldwide level, the time is right to leap forward.
When you decide to expand your business beyond borders, there are a number of different considerations to make sure for a smooth transition. It is not just about being multilingual but putting your business into a foreign country that fulfills their requirement. It should be helpful and, most importantly, serve some purpose.
Before you get started, here are some questions that you need to ask yourself:
- Will my product sell well in the targeted culture?
- Is your target market familiar with the product or service that you offer?
- Do you feel it will work out in that country?
- What does the infrastructure look like?
Here’s how to expand internationally:
- Keep the Business Purpose Alive
Before expanding your brand globally, it is essential to understand its potential in its current market or national iteration.
If your brand strategy is not up to the mark, you may face difficulty while expanding your business globally. So, knowing and understanding your customers is the very first step where you understand your customers abroad. Because your brand can either make or break your business, starting from product packaging, website, customer service, who will be your ideal buyer, etc., you need to have a solid strategy that works for all of these.
So, take time, understand your business, research your market to know how you want to present your brand in front of your new audience.
- Don’t Forget Language Barriers and Cultural Challenges
When you enter a foreign market, there are a lot of obstacles that you may experience. Cultural differences and language barriers are of the top two of a few. These two will demand you to adjust your marketing and branding strategy to impress your consumers differently and emphasize their culture. That means, even if you are working on opening a new office, you will need to consider the office culture. Because work/life balance is different everywhere, and you need to make your decisions that revolve around that.
Also, language barriers can also make it challenging to communicate effectively when you position yourself there. The best way to escape this is by learning a new language. It shows that you respect their values, culture, and it helps you build meaningful relationships.
You can identify which language is commonly spoken in this region and how long it can take for you to learn it. After that, put a plan in place and learn the language, so you get ready to move your business forward.
- Focus on market Needs that Your Business can Solve
When we say globally, it doesn’t mean the entire United States can be your targeted country. It depends on a number of factors, and some regions serve as a much better market for your product or service.
Here are some points that will help you decide on which areas to consider:
- Is there a serious need for my product or service in the area?
- Is this market saturated with others with a similar product or service like mine?
Apart from these, you can decide the aspects as per your business and determine the most targeted areas that will have the requirement of your product.
When you enter a global market, there is a good chance of you dealing with customers who speak different languages than you. Hence, it is important to translate your product materials and maintain your branding as a business that cares about other cultures.
If needed, you can consider having a native speaker on your team who can help you with these requirements and know you are communicating with your customers the way you need to. You can also try a video translation service. There are numerous professional translation services available today to help you keep up with your client and build relationships that will matter the most.
- Keep your Logistics Game Right
It is essential to handle the logistics of your global expansion in a systematic way which is crucial to your success. Here you should pay attention to the factors that could fail your seamless logistical plans. For example, things like shipping costs, ruined cargo, and government regulations are a few you should consider.
Remember that logistics is very much crucial to your brand image because setbacks like these could affect the brand image. If you keep these in check, you can build customer loyalty faster after you deliver on the agreed time. Conversely, when you lose track of logistical things, they will only backfire on your business.
If you’re entering a new market outside your country, it’s vital to understand the existing competition in your new market.
Studying the competition can give you a sense of the region’s demand for that product or service. You can also learn from the successes and failures of those companies what works in this market and what doesn’t seem to.
- Pay Importance to Culture
When dealing with a different set of people, there must be a vast difference in ideologies, practices, perspectives, etc. When you expand your business globally, these are some of the significant aspects to consider.
There are chances that your services might be better in some regions. However, there might be a higher or lower demand based on cultural practices and specifications.
An adaptive approach to the new market is the foundation of your branding strategies. If you don’t crack them, you will not be able to appeal to your new set of customers. In addition, because of these changes in cultural views and demands, something that may be offensive in one culture might not be offensive in others. These are the things you need to understand before starting your global expansion program.
There are some of the biggest businesses that would have failed in some markets by overestimating their appeal.
Setting your brand in a global marketplace needs consistency. Whatever you do, you need to stay consistent with your brand’s promises and values. As people are growing with their perspectives, it becomes vital that people also see your brand as a good example.
Showing consistency to your brand’s promises and values is one of the crucial aspects of a stronger foundation.
If you are a business wanting to expand at a global level, above mentioned are some of the things to consider. Of course, it is always a huge step, and proper planning is required. However, if you keep all things in check, your global expansion branding strategy will strongly appeal to your customers and the market as a whole.
Even if it is about starting from step 1, the key is to be consistent about your activities. Then, once you have everything at your checks, everything will get streamlined to help you set your business apart from others at a global level.
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Fintech Kennek raises $12.5M seed round to digitize lending
London-based fintech startup Kennek has raised $12.5 million in seed funding to expand its lending operating system.
According to an Oct. 10 tech.eu report, the round was led by HV Capital and included participation from Dutch Founders Fund, AlbionVC, FFVC, Plug & Play Ventures, and Syndicate One. Kennek offers software-as-a-service tools to help non-bank lenders streamline their operations using open banking, open finance, and payments.
The platform aims to automate time-consuming manual tasks and consolidate fragmented data to simplify lending. Xavier De Pauw, founder of Kennek said:
“Until kennek, lenders had to devote countless hours to menial operational tasks and deal with jumbled and hard-coded data – which makes every other part of lending a headache. As former lenders ourselves, we lived and breathed these frustrations, and built kennek to make them a thing of the past.”
The company said the latest funding round was oversubscribed and closed quickly despite the challenging fundraising environment. The new capital will be used to expand Kennek’s engineering team and strengthen its market position in the UK while exploring expansion into other European markets. Barbod Namini, Partner at lead investor HV Capital, commented on the investment:
“Kennek has developed an ambitious and genuinely unique proposition which we think can be the foundation of the entire alternative lending space. […] It is a complicated market and a solution that brings together all information and stakeholders onto a single platform is highly compelling for both lenders & the ecosystem as a whole.”
The fintech lending space has grown rapidly in recent years, but many lenders still rely on legacy systems and manual processes that limit efficiency and scalability. Kennek aims to leverage open banking and data integration to provide lenders with a more streamlined, automated lending experience.
The seed funding will allow the London-based startup to continue developing its platform and expanding its team to meet demand from non-bank lenders looking to digitize operations. Kennek’s focus on the UK and Europe also comes amid rising adoption of open banking and open finance in the regions.
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Fortune 500’s race for generative AI breakthroughs
As excitement around generative AI grows, Fortune 500 companies, including Goldman Sachs, are carefully examining the possible applications of this technology. A recent survey of U.S. executives indicated that 60% believe generative AI will substantially impact their businesses in the long term. However, they anticipate a one to two-year timeframe before implementing their initial solutions. This optimism stems from the potential of generative AI to revolutionize various aspects of businesses, from enhancing customer experiences to optimizing internal processes. In the short term, companies will likely focus on pilot projects and experimentation, gradually integrating generative AI into their operations as they witness its positive influence on efficiency and profitability.
Goldman Sachs’ Cautious Approach to Implementing Generative AI
In a recent interview, Goldman Sachs CIO Marco Argenti revealed that the firm has not yet implemented any generative AI use cases. Instead, the company focuses on experimentation and setting high standards before adopting the technology. Argenti recognized the desire for outcomes in areas like developer and operational efficiency but emphasized ensuring precision before putting experimental AI use cases into production.
According to Argenti, striking the right balance between driving innovation and maintaining accuracy is crucial for successfully integrating generative AI within the firm. Goldman Sachs intends to continue exploring this emerging technology’s potential benefits and applications while diligently assessing risks to ensure it meets the company’s stringent quality standards.
One possible application for Goldman Sachs is in software development, where the company has observed a 20-40% productivity increase during its trials. The goal is for 1,000 developers to utilize generative AI tools by year’s end. However, Argenti emphasized that a well-defined expectation of return on investment is necessary before fully integrating generative AI into production.
To achieve this, the company plans to implement a systematic and strategic approach to adopting generative AI, ensuring that it complements and enhances the skills of its developers. Additionally, Goldman Sachs intends to evaluate the long-term impact of generative AI on their software development processes and the overall quality of the applications being developed.
Goldman Sachs’ approach to AI implementation goes beyond merely executing models. The firm has created a platform encompassing technical, legal, and compliance assessments to filter out improper content and keep track of all interactions. This comprehensive system ensures seamless integration of artificial intelligence in operations while adhering to regulatory standards and maintaining client confidentiality. Moreover, the platform continuously improves and adapts its algorithms, allowing Goldman Sachs to stay at the forefront of technology and offer its clients the most efficient and secure services.
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UK seizes web3 opportunity simplifying crypto regulations
As Web3 companies increasingly consider leaving the United States due to regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom must simplify its cryptocurrency regulations to attract these businesses. The conservative think tank Policy Exchange recently released a report detailing ten suggestions for improving Web3 regulation in the country. Among the recommendations are reducing liability for token holders in decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and encouraging the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to adopt alternative Know Your Customer (KYC) methodologies, such as digital identities and blockchain analytics tools. These suggestions aim to position the UK as a hub for Web3 innovation and attract blockchain-based businesses looking for a more conducive regulatory environment.
Streamlining Cryptocurrency Regulations for Innovation
To make it easier for emerging Web3 companies to navigate existing legal frameworks and contribute to the UK’s digital economy growth, the government must streamline cryptocurrency regulations and adopt forward-looking approaches. By making the regulatory landscape clear and straightforward, the UK can create an environment that fosters innovation, growth, and competitiveness in the global fintech industry.
The Policy Exchange report also recommends not weakening self-hosted wallets or treating proof-of-stake (PoS) services as financial services. This approach aims to protect the fundamental principles of decentralization and user autonomy while strongly emphasizing security and regulatory compliance. By doing so, the UK can nurture an environment that encourages innovation and the continued growth of blockchain technology.
Despite recent strict measures by UK authorities, such as His Majesty’s Treasury and the FCA, toward the digital assets sector, the proposed changes in the Policy Exchange report strive to make the UK a more attractive location for Web3 enterprises. By adopting these suggestions, the UK can demonstrate its commitment to fostering innovation in the rapidly evolving blockchain and cryptocurrency industries while ensuring a robust and transparent regulatory environment.
The ongoing uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrency regulations in various countries has prompted Web3 companies to explore alternative jurisdictions with more precise legal frameworks. As the United States grapples with regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom can position itself as a hub for Web3 innovation by simplifying and streamlining its cryptocurrency regulations.
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