Identifying Appropriate International Opportunities for Your Company
There are approximately one hundred and ninety six countries in the world, and almost all of them present a market opportunity to you. You cannot sell into every one of these countries, nor would you want to. Given this, it is important to be able to evaluate which ones are appropriate for your product/service and your capacity and capability to serve them. Choosing the right one(s) is not a complicated or time consuming task, as there are a couple of tried and true methods for evaluating the risk of doing business successfully in any given country.
The first is what is called a PEST analysis. This is a standard strategic planning tool that allows you to evaluate the political, economic, social and technical situation in any country to give you a strong sense of how difficult or easy it will be to do business in any country.
A second strategic planning tool is the use of the 5 Forces Analysis. Michael Porter of the Harvard Business School developed this tool to guide companies in determining their competition position and capability in any market. This is an important consideration, since after choosing a market you then need to understand your competition and your ability to be successful.