As the world becomes forgetful of the days before the internet and globalization, some new opportunities in how we conduct business have emerged. New opportunities mean better understanding of the consumer you are trying to cater to. With globalization, it is easier than ever to cater to markets beyond your local one. In the past, a company would have to open an office in an international city and hire local analysts, strategists, economists, skilled professionals from that local demographic in order to succeed. With the invent of the internet, globalization has now allowed for all these things to be done remotely without compromising the business’ future success.
While in the past, companies often opted to start in their local economy and expand once fortune allowed for it, it has become more viable and logical to attack your target audience from more then one front. With minimal efforts and costs, a company can take a product into multiple markets simultaneously. With big data being the driving force behind most key decision made in companies, it means that having access to big data, allows you to pick and choose with pinpoint precision all the viable markets that have high potential for success.
As any good business person would tell you, the key to success is not just a good team, a good quality product, and being an in demand product, but timing as well. Often great ideas dwindle into obscurity long before they become a realized product. One of the biggest challenges to determine the “when” factor is not being able to test A-B test when launching in a single market. With multiple markets, this can be better estimated as each region’s life cycle spans for a different length of time. This allows for “foresight” into the long term markets well ahead of the “softer” markets which experience the full life cycle much quicker. Products get adapted in different ways. Some have features that “discover” popularity in the consumer earlier in some demographics than in others. This allows you to learn and adapt the flaws in the feature before it is “discovered” in the other markets.
Another great challenge is figuring out “who” the target audience is. While big data can give you immediate answers, doing soft test pilot market launches in multiple demographics can validate the “who” much faster. Often one demographic customer base will respond quite differently to the same case study simply due to cultural and geographical differences.
This next challenge is important. With new product launches, it is probably most important to know “how” the consumer will interact with the product? How will they be introduced to the product? How likely are they to adapt to the new product? The how, takes lots of trial and error. Far too often do great products succeed in one country, but miss the opportunity to reach “Golden Unicorn” status in another. Diversified launch markets allow for better understanding of these factors simultaneously. Being able to tweak small little differences in each market will allow for not only a better launch in one, but a higher return on investment in the long term.
By launching in multiple markets, you are given clear insight into the “when”, the “who” and most importantly, the “how” of your consumer much earlier into the product life. Eliminating bad judgment calls, poor launches, and other unsightly and sometimes downright damaging growing pains ensures a greater more successful life for the product in the long term.