Q: What is an export plan?
A: An export plan is your guideline for the development of your international business. A good export plan is critical in setting and achieving your export targets. Keep it simple, but make sure everyone in the company involved in achieving export results is aware of the plan and has a sense of engagement with it. It should include the following:
Having an export plan helps you focus your company’s resources on manageable, measurable goals. An export strategy must be integrated with your company’s overall business plan. Align export activities with daily operations to avoid any conflicts between your domestic and international activities.
Q: How do I develop an export plan?
A: Your export plan will address your company’s unique exporting challenges and opportunities. Developing a sound export strategy helps you define your export aims and match your resources to those aims. Your export strategy will help you manage the market sectors you have identified as core business. Focusing your resources enables you to provide quality responses and service to your new export customers.
To begin, conduct market research. Decide on how you’ll enter your international markets, operate day-to-day and finance your exporting. Establish goals and timelines for achieving those goals. The plan, from your goals to your export financing, may evolve over time.
Q: What export planning resources are available to Wisconsin businesses?
A: Numerous resources are available, through WEDC and other organizations. For example, one invaluable tool is ExporTech™, a proven export strategy development program, offering customized international business coaching and assistance to Wisconsin companies. This is designed to speed a company’s “go to market” timeline by developing a customized international growth plan for the company’s product in key markets. On average, ExporTech™ graduates have increased international sales by $400,000-$600,000 within 12 months of completing the program.
Additionally, small and medium-sized Wisconsin businesses may qualify for the WEDC’s Export Education Grant, a grant designed to help companies become export-ready and to help enable companies’ expansion into global markets. Through this grant, employees directly involved with implementing companies’ export strategies receive appropriate training and education. Ultimately, it is intended to help companies develop internal competencies and global fluency.
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For more information on how representatives at WEDC can help you develop your export plan, email us or call 855.INWIBIZ (855.469.4249).