Out of the Box

Export Market Development

The Issue

New products and new markets need new ideas and a different approach. Our client, a 30-year family-led manufacturer of heavy equipment, held 90% of a market that was about to contract – quickly. They needed to diversify by securing the North American rights for new product. And then get that new product into the market.

The Game Plan

Secure the distribution rights; market research, product renaming and branding; UL and CSA certification; and cloud-based business tools were all part of our strategy. We started by writing the proposal to secure the exclusive North American distribution rights from a Japanese engineering firm, rather than the Canadian rights that our client initially envisioned. Then we did the market research to define the market and channel partners required to make the launch a success. By collaborating with our client’s management team, the Japanese manufacturer, and their Canadian marketing partner, we were able to create a one and three-year launch plans, budget, and forecast appropriate for the COVID-19 digital economy. Our client and the manufacturer trusted our experienced, hands-on approach for this year-long product launch implementation.

The Outcome

We saw the pivots needed to avoid a COVID-19 collapse. What started as a new North American product launch for our client became a manufacturer’s agreement. Local suppliers were included in developing the remanufacturing program for the UL and CSA approvals. A distribution channel was set up. We secured customer purchase agreements in advance. LinkedIn and Navigator lead generation programs replaced a trade show exhibitor schedule. A new CRM and sales team training helped build and manage the customer pipeline. And the rebranding from a Japanese to North American perspective was completed. By working closely with all the stakeholders as their trusted partner in the process, we made this happen almost seamlessly.

How We Helped

  • Contract negotiations
  • Financial planning and sales forecasting
  • CRM implementation and management
  • Marketing program development and implementation
  • Customer sales