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Award Winning Steps to Successful Exporting

A New Year tends to instigate New Year resolutions, providing an opportune time to plan exporting your products or services to grow your business overseas. To get you started in the right direction, Duncan Hoyland, Export Co-ordinator Sheffield City Region provides some common similarities he’s observed amongst successful (and award winning) exporters. 

I have been lucky, over the years, to be the judge on a number of export awards. What stands out amongst all the winners is preparation, preparation, preparation.

Fundamental to preparation is research; knowing your market and knowing your competition. Affecting new and existing exporters alike, selecting a new market can be time consuming and risky and in an era of alleged “fake news”, making decisions based on reliable sources of information is vital. There is a vast amount of reliable research resources out there, created to help users better understand their target markets. However, they have varying degrees of information which can still cloud research conclusions as a result. Export statistics, economic information, in depth market assessments, political and geographical statistics, consumption, digital trends, risk levels are just some of statistics provided. Each resource has a different way of accessing the content, and in some cases, is chargeable. A tool that is free to use and ultimately aims to help businesses reduce the time they spend researching these sites is our new Market Research Tool. The tool identifies the most appropriate resource for the user and allows them to share their results with International Trade Advisers so that they are best placed to further support their export strategy.

Many export award winners obtain advice from varied sources; companies already in export markets, sectoral experts, UK government support and Department for International Trade offices around the world. DIT and its partners can help you in all aspects of your export journey, providing you with further information you need to make the right decisions. As a practical guide, our websites, and can be vital sources of information and even provide live export leads. Reviewing our monthly newsletter will also keep you up to date with event and advisory services. You can subscribe to this via the contact us button at the top of this page. A further step that the majority of successful exporters take is to visit customers and partners overseas just as they would in the UK. Trade shows and trade missions are fruitful methods of doing this as you often learn as much from your peers as you do from contacts in the market.

Finally, export award winners tend to put communication, however they do it, at the heart of their export strategy. Please note the export strategy is important, but it should directly link to overall aims and objectives and fundamentally support other aspects of the business. It must always be rechecked against an ever-changing business environment.

To you award winners who are enjoying export success, I salute you and long may it continue. The Department for International Trade is always looking for companies to talk about their successes, to encourage others to follow in their footsteps. So if you’re already successful at exporting and would like to shout about it, please let us know and we will happily shout with you. For now, if you’re new to exporting, enjoy the journey.

If you would like to book a meeting with one of our Trade Advisers in the region, please get in touch.

E:     T: +44 (0) 300 365 1000