UK market entry – first impressions count

In theory, the world is getting smaller, and we can now reach out to customers around the globe from the comfort of our desk.  So it’s sometimes tempting to think that going global should be easier than ever. 

But in our experience, whether a big or small company, the market entry issues that companies face in the UK are still the same regardless of how interconnected we all are.  And the challenges all come down to people.

A little knowledge is dangerous

We all like to think that we are better armed with information than ever before, and we are.  It makes sense to start with what we know and how things work at home.  Sometimes, however, companies fail to challenge themselves enough beyond that and assume that their route to market, positioning or stakeholder set is going to travel with them. 

Or they do some research but the first bit of digging takes them down one rabbit hole and rather than coming back up to the surface and reviewing the situation, they just keep digging and digging.  So, eventually they find the “right” answer but without noticing they asked the wrong question.

However much research has been done, there’s nothing like meeting people here in the UK who can provide more answers. More importantly, though, people here will know other, sometimes better, questions to ask and equally importantly the right people to question.

Relationships matter

So if you can find experts in the UK who can use their knowledge and network to build yours, why wouldn’t you?  Building a trusted network can take months if not years.  We constantly meet people who say that, back home, getting in to see a brand or a company would take them just a matter of weeks but here they are surprised by just how long it takes.

It is still people who make the world of business work, and there’s no doubt that someone with good networks can speed up your learning curve and get you in front of potential customers and partners much more quickly.

We speak the same language

Yes we do – but not always!  Or not when it comes to business.  Creating a pitch to someone in the UK market means understanding their issues and the solutions that your brand or company can provide. And then framing it accordingly. Context is all-important and knowing what’s on the news agenda and how it might affect your business is crucial.

On the flip side, just trying to replicate a competitor’s proposition or making your website look as similar to theirs as possible is likely to make your job harder.  Blending in to the UK business landscape is not always a positive.  If people cannot quickly understand what makes you different, you are expecting them to work hard to get to understand you.  And maybe, they just can’t be bothered. 

The major lesson learnt about market entry?  It’s simple: “you only get one chance to make a first impression.”  So, get your messaging sorted and start telling the world you’ve arrived.  Don’t leave it too long otherwise you could be in danger of looking too slow or too small.

If you are finding your market entry plan into the UK is not yet formulated or even not yet working, then contact us and see if we can show you how to get it moving along.

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Last updated on: March 18, 2022