Tip to enter the Asian Market

  1. Keep the marketing basics – The 4 Ps (Product, price, place and promotion) are as important as in any other market. Xpand Latam recomend to do the research before and after entering the target market so that the your value proposition meets and continues to meet the target market’s needs.
  2. Patience – is essential when applying the 4 Ps to the target market. The sales process takes normally longer and is more complex than in local markets.  Asian buyers will take time to be convinced that a foreign company has the ‘local’ credentials to meet their needs.
  3. Listen – This is the only way to be able to understand and therefore meet the local market needs. Chinese companies do not want to buy a product or service that has come tailored made for their market.
  4. Relationships – Pay attention, but do not spend all your time, on relationships. Any salesperson must be prepared to be ‘friends’ with a potential partner. However, this comes in combination and does not replace the 4 Ps of the marketing mix.
  5. Be confident in your quality – Foreign companies have an initial advantage from a strong position, in that they overall are assumed to have great quality. Focus on the value you add, and be prepared to explain why you can add value in Asia, specifically.
  6. Be methodical, have a plan – Something that Asians have in mind as a quality from foreigners is that they have a well stablished process approach to do business.  It is clear though that when you cannot step out of your plan and you claim to have the only path to success, Chinese companies quickly lose interest in your offering. However, do not be afraid to highlight the methodical nature of your offering, as this is something that is valued by Chinese businesspeople and seen to be lacking in some Chinese businesses.
  7. Be flexible – as mentioned earlier, flexibility in matter like product, service, payment terms and prices is crucial for success in the China market. Xpand Latam recommend that companies willing to enter the Chinese market, should put a big effort to identify and meet Chinese customers’ real needs instead of assume that what customers want is the same as their local markets.
  8. Be prepared for plenty of negotiation – Any potential company should be prepared for plenty of negotiation when selling to Chinese businesses. It is almost inconceivable that first proposals will be accepted. Keep in mind the fact that buyers may be deliberately benchmarking suppliers, and always try to reserve sufficient margin for further price reductions at a later stage.
  9. Do not exaggerate – Focusing on the credentials you have, rather than exaggerating to make up for perceived deficiencies. Above all, Chinese companies want to trust their partners.