Expanding Your Online Market - Project ENE

Making Sense of Online Projects

Expanding Your Online Market

For many entrepreneurs, it’s sometimes difficult to think on a larger scale. Of course if you’re CEO of a multinational then it seems like the most natural thing in the world to expand into new countries and new markets. But for the entrepreneur who works online then although it’s perfectly feasible to target different countries it can in reality take some commitment.

If your business has a web site and can supply goods or services anywhere then it potentially makes sense to expand and target new areas. Communication is now much easier, there are plenty of specialist distributors who can deal with all sorts of areas and products. Also your product might have lots of competition in some countries but have an open field in others. For example there are many products that sell well in Europe and hardly exists in the US, and vice-versa – those products offer a huge opportunity for those brave enough to stake their claim.

The barriers for digital marketing are much, much lower than a traditional physical business. There are some costs, but the investments don’t really compare with the costs of setting up shops or premises. You will need to invest in advertising in your target market, perhaps develop a custom site/or language variant of your website. You’ll be well advised to do some research on competition and opportunities – most marketers invest in proxies or VPNs in the specific market. So for instance if you wanted to promote your European product in the US, one of the first steps would be to invest in a subscription to an American proxy server – here’s one. This sounds like a luxury but it is an essential first step, it allows you to surf like a user in your target market and also allows you access to specific local advertising portals.

But that’s hardly a huge investment at least in monetary terms, although it can take a lot of time to properly research a market. But of course one of the advantages with a digital business with minimal expansion costs is that to some extent you can ‘just give it a go’, Often the best market related knowledge will be found by experience, try sending those first PPC ads and see how it works.

Tailor your product to the specific market, give it a unique selling point and reach out to those new customers. For example a company I know sell a security product online, but target their product very specifically to each area. Here’s one of their products which sells in Montreal well – this video is one promotion – Watch US Netflix in Canada, which basically does it what it says on the tin. But it targets a very specific requirement, the market may not be huge but the need is very specific and people will buy.

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