[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@24hrtranslation”]A 30 Second Guide to Global Market Scanning[/tweetthis]
The increasing difficulty in growing market share and profitability to meet the demands of investors has ushered in aggressive marketing initiatives. Many companies that have outgrown their domestic markets, relentlessly pursue new opportunities in emerging markets. However, all international marketing strategies come with a certain level of risk. As businesses become increasingly international, they become more vulnerable to risks of having highly interdependent trading partners, and global issues such as social, economic, technical, competitive and regulatory factors. Continual monitoring where businesses source, produce and market becomes an essential business function.
With increasing interconnectedness, domestic businesses enter into foreign partnerships for raw materials, security, business services, and environmental protection. The interconnectedness of these partnerships create certain vulnerabilities. As an example, a war in Libya or Iraq, reduces the supply of oil and raises energy and food prices. Revolutions and revolts can either usher in new democracies, like in Angola or berth oppressive regime like in Iran. The unraveling of recent events likes those in Syria, Iraq, Iran and Egypt can have worldwide political and economic implications that can influence demand, supply, pricing, poverty, corruption, and mass exodus. Because revolutions can happen quickly in the developing world, managers need a comprehensive dose of real-time business and economic insights into the foreign markets in locations where business transactions occur.
What is a Market Scan?
The process of continually analyzing the external market environment in order to define the market’s needs, track competitor actions, comply with new regulations, adapt value-added technologies and adjust to economic conditions is called market scanning. The key benefits of effective scanning are the identification of new market opportunities and the development of proactive strategies to guard against market disruptions.
[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@24hrtranslation”]How Do You Scan a Foreign Market?[/tweetthis]
How Can You Scan a Market?
The purpose of market scanning is to collect and analyze relevant marketing data that contributes to strategic planning and organizational profitability. However, market scanning doesn’t necessarily require the use of expensive marketing research techniques like focus groups and surveys. Here are some resources that companies use to scan the external market for important trends, opportunities and threats.
Social media such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram might also be useful for collecting data for a market scan. Unfortunately, the amount of information might be limited based on region, industry or culture. The usefulness of the information might also be questionable.
Sales representatives can be a good source for external market information. Marketing professionals can gain insights by reviewing territory sales reports, conducting interviews and by sending surveys to sales representatives. Marketing managers must be alert to the possibility of biased opinions and misconceptions that sales representatives may have.
Big Data-Database Marketing and Data Mining
Many companies now have large sales and marketing databases that can generate useful reports. Using data mining tools such as SPSS or SAS, a marketing manager can produce sales forecasts and analyses that uncover patterns or trends. These findings can then be used to set the course for additional research.
Customer Panels and Post Purchase Activities
Customer relationship and customer service management offers marketers opportunities to capture important information about the external marketing environment. Capturing an analyzing customer complaints, concerns, questions and comments can be an important component of the market scanning process. Post purchase communication in the form of postcard, surveys, telephone calls, brochures, and various other types of follow-up can also elicit valuable market insights.
Distributors are closer to end users than manufacturers and are often more conscious of local market conditions that influence demand. Marketers should realize that the feedback they receive from distributors can be biased and influenced by ulterior motives.
Bibliographic databases, like ABI/INFORM, that often contain full-text articles of trade journals and magazines are another good source of information that may influence the marketing environment. Full text aggregators such as EBSCO and ProQuest can also be valuable resources.
[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@24hrtranslation”]Free Foreign Cable, Satellite and Local Television Channels[/tweetthis]
Other Media Sources
Some areas of the world are more prone to endemic and systemic change that can be disruptive and possibly catastrophic to business partners. These areas are often underdeveloped and news isn’t covered regularly by western media. CNN International, Bloomberg and other cable news channels do a reasonably good job of covering major events from around the world. However, outside of the largest economies, there is usually very limited depth and breadth of coverage. For many areas of the world, there isn’t enough international interest or resources to justify provide ongoing coverage of routine and major happenings that shape culture, create markets and drive demand in local markets.
[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@24hrtranslation”]How Can You Market to the World, When You Don’t Understand It?[/tweetthis]
How Can You Market to the World, When You Don’t Understand It?
Marketers and other international business leaders may find that having access to live local television on demand from anywhere in the world offers an extremely valuable resource. With this type of resource, managers can get immediate local, lifestyle and economic news reports from hundreds of countries throughout the world. Many have already been translated into English or are offered in English.
One service, featured in the video below offers a solution that is similar to Netflix. The user interface is similar to that offered by digital cable services and satellite television providers. In addition, there is PVR functionality. From the easy to use programming guide, there are more than 1,000 streaming live channels from around the world in HD quality.
Free Foreign, Local and Premium Cable Channels
Those involved in business ventures in Africa will be particularly interested in the vast number of African television stations that include cable news channels and popular local broadcast channels and network television channels in a wide range of African countries, including all major African economies. If you conduct business in Latin America or Asia you will be equally impressed with the wide range of quality networks, news channels and local television channels that are available in each country.
Suppose you are an international marketing manager who would like better updates on Senegal, a major oil producing company in West Africa. With a yearly donation of $99 to IPTV, you can tune into nine major Senegal live television channels including TFM (Entertainment and News), RTGA (News), RTS 1 (News), 2S TV (General), Walf TV (General), and more. There are also more than 1,000 other major television channels that you can access throughout the world.
Benefits of Free International Cable Channels
By closely monitoring local markets brand managers can better anticipate the political pulse, economic health and trends in the marketplace. With improved foresight, managers can better plan strategies to mitigate losses from political upheavals and terrorism, more quickly identify opportunities in the marketplace.
Other Benefits of IPTV
Even with no formal education in foreign languages or professional translation skills, tuning into the local media of a given region can give professionals basic exposure to ordinary life. If you are trying to study a language or learn a dialect, watching real-time newscasts and television programming offers an emersion type experience that keeps learning interesting and engaging. Visually engaging graphics and seeing people in real-time brings learning alive and therefore increases the desire to learn grammar.