How do you establish credentials in a new market?

My answer to Rick’s comments in the previous post led me to write this post. I’ve been talking about brands crossing cultures, the mistakes some have made, and the issues of interpreting value across cultural borders. Lets then start from the very beginning – you enter a new market, one that’s never heard your name [not everyone can be an  iconic brand like an Apple, Microsoft, Coca Cola or Levi’s] – let’s say it’s Tide and you’re entering India.

In your home market you’re the leader, but do they even know you ‘over there‘ ? How do you begin?

A good question to start the Fall season with, no? Any ideas or thoughts?

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2 Responses to How do you establish credentials in a new market?

  1. Jay Dutta says:

    Interesting post Niti – just chanced across your blog in a moment of serendipity from (can I even remember) – possibly Design India. I haven’t probably lived in half as many places (7 cities in the last 10 years – and before that just one for donkeys years) as you might have.
    However, theres another way to rephrase the question perhaps – in the home market you are the no. 5 brand, but can you be a leader in markets where you are unknown? Take two examples – Skoda and Haier. Skoda in UK still has to live with historical stories of poor Czech quality. Despite being bought by VW, it struggles in the UK market to be recognised as a brand of choice.
    Our good friends Anne and David, rang one evening (about 3 years ago) to tell us that they were buying a new car and hopefully we would still remain friends after they told us what car they were buying – it was a Skoda. In India Skoda is positioned as a premium brand and India’s comparative ignorance of the car’s marque serves it well.
    Haier is another case – the Chinese brand cannot enter EU markets – the perception there is similar to those of Japanese goods in the 1960s. But in India its ‘imported’ – a brand new, promising entrant.
    And by the way, Anne and David are still good friends and the Skoda has served them well.
    Jay

  2. niti bhan says:

    Jay,
    You bring up some very interesting points in your comment and I can relate to the Skoda story… for a few years my dad had a Lada in Singapore simply because they were affordable with the COE surchange http://www.expatsingapore.com/once/cost.shtml
    More importantly, you point out that a brand does NOT need to be leader in its home market to build a leadership in a new market – in one sense that allows brands like Haier, as in your example, to start from scratch to create an equity like they’re doing in INdia. Hyundai has also done wonders in India if I’m not mistaken.
    I think this where emerging global brands will have an advantage, they have no history to hold them back in a sense, if they are not already leaders elsewhere, no?

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