Want to learn about the future of sales?

Join our newsletter!

Proven techniques that will bring you customers from abroad within 1 month

Dasha Oliinyk in

Blog/Proven techniques that will bring you customers from abroad within 1 month

While Elon Musk wants to colonize Mars, companies still struggle to spread their business on Earth. There are lots of challenges, but many of them are just in people’s heads. Let’s see how to find a new customer (and many more) outside your country within a month.

If you can provide your service/product remotely – you must stop burning money on the local market and start targeting multiple markets. Getting clients from abroad is a waterfall of opportunities for your company. It allows you to grow and scale your business easier, gives more chances to survive in this changing and competitive business world. If you choose to pass by this waterfall – don’t complain when you end up falling into the swamp of mediocrity and lost opportunities.

So what is there that scares you in selling internationally? You don’t know how to start? What countries to target? How to approach potential clients from different countries? What to do if approaching potential clients abroad doesn’t bring good results?…

You’re not the only one having such a dilemma. When we at RightHello started to approach potential customers abroad, we had a similar bunch of questions. But to our surprise, they were relatively easy to handle. And solutions that we found proved to work not only for RightHello but for many of our clients too. All tips and observations we’ve decided to collect and share with you here.

Only 3 steps separate you from getting clients from abroad

get clients from abroad in three steps

Preparations

„I need more clients for my business now!” – before you say so and start selling abroad, you’d rather be practical and understand clearly what you would need for that. This is necessary if you want to use your assets at your best and avoid unexpected surprises. Like the bank rejecting the payment from abroad, or not having a translated contract when the potential new customer is ready to buy from you… Things might happen and it’s better to be prepared for them.

Check if you are capable of processing customers from abroad

Is your business ready for the world expansion? How to effectively find customers for your particular business? What changes you’d need to make? Is it feasible for your business to make those changes?

To answer these questions make sure:

  • there are no legal/tax issues making it difficult for your company to conclude agreements/get income from abroad
  • your staff speaks English (as the internationally most common language in business)
  • your website, as well as all the documents you provide your clients with (like offers, contract templates), are in English
  • working hours of your staff can be adjusted in case your service needs support and there is a big time difference between you and your clients

Portfolio

It’s harder to find new clients and prove your credibility if they don’t know you at all. You can refer to your previous customers, but if they are not internationally known, nobody would get impressed by those names.

This is why it’s important to prepare a portfolio, that will convince potential customers with the results of your previous projects (backed with concrete numbers and statistics) and clients’ testimonies.

Offer

Finding clients is usually a hard work. To win, your offer must be more compelling than those from your competitors abroad. And if you think that you can convince by lower prices – this is the wrong direction to go. There is always somebody from low-income country happy to work almost for free. I bet you don’t want to compete with them.

Besides in many industries “cheaper” services usually mean “worse quality” services. You should have something else to attract your customers with. Find what differentiates your company, what’s your x-factor. It can be your innovative solution or approach, your brilliant team, the customer service.

What country to target?

There is no golden rule for finding the country with best buying potential, especially for specific business. While looking for clients, you should definitely have some strategy, consider what you offer, analyse the situation on the market, check competitors… But sometimes experimenting can bring interesting results too.

Don’t follow the mainstream – find your niche

People from all around the world tend to think about the USA and the UK as perfect places to find their clients, some kind of gold mine waiting for them to come and start the cash harvest. Almost every decent startup, software and tech company with international ambitions have in plans to break into these markets.

Indeed, many tech and software companies successfully operate in low-cost locations and get customers from high-level of income countries, making a great deal from the costs difference.

But are countries like the USA and the UK really good choices for companies that are new on the international arena and search for their first customers abroad?

First of all, keep in mind that too many people hope to find their holy grail in the USA/the UK and try to approach their perfect customer there. Business people working there are overwhelmed with calls and emails. It’s harder to get their attention no matter how great/innovative/affordable your offer is. They see too many of those every day.

And when it comes to the wealthiness, sadly but true, the USA and the UK are no longer the leaders in the GDP growth. There are many rich countries to consider if that’s the main factor.

Try to find locations where your offer will be unique, still needed and easy to afford.

Targeting “less popular” countries that fit the niche usually works better for our clients. As an example these are results of one cold emailing campaign we did for our clients (the company from Belarus) that targeted the USA and then the Baltic countries:

customer target in abroad

If you decided to target the USA no matter what, make sure you do it RIGHT. Check out thesetips on approaching customers from the USA with cold emails or email introductions.

Where to start from?

It’s possible to increase the chances of your overseas success if you follow these little tricks while choosing the country to target:

Start from countries you have some connection to through your network

Maybe you had customers abroad before or some of your current clients have overseas offices? How about companies/organizations whom you are partners with? Ask them for referrals, recommendations, introductions.

Use your personal connections. You might have friends living somewhere abroad and can help you with getting in touch with some businesses around there. Your network is definitely broader than you think. Just look around carefully.

Use your geo-location wisely and boldly

If you’re located close to the border, check out who is out there neighboring with you. If there are potential clients in a neighboring country whom you can reach in an hour or two by car – why not target them?

Also pay attention to low-cost flights from your place. Some destinations might be more accessible (both physically and money-wise) than you think.

Another hack – see if there are companies in your country with operations abroad you could offer your services to.

Be sure there are companies that satisfy your ideal customer profile at the destination you choose

It might seem like a perfect idea to target some specific overseas location. But are you sure you will find your clients there? That there are actually prospects interested in your offer over there?

To figure out – you can do research or use the application (like the one we use at RightHello) that in few clicks will check what concrete companies matching your target criteria are there in one country or another.

Events – perfect chance to meet with people from different countries

Attending events might be a waste of time or a great chance to find new customers for your business – all depends on how well you are prepared. If you want to take maximum from it – pick industry related events (conference, expo…) and make sure the attendees, in their majority, fit your customer profile.

Then email participants before the event – introduce yourself and schedule meetings during this event. This is a great way to avoid creepy stalking on people you don’t know while trying to get their attention directly during the event. If you schedule conversations beforehand, you can easily talk to 20+ CEOs within one trip.

Try different strategies, experiment

Some of our clients successfully target separate cities, not countries. It’s easier to arrange business meetings for them when majority of their current and future clients is concentrated in one city. They choose big cities with multiple opportunities like Paris, Copenhagen, Chicago, Dubai.

The other “think out of the box” approach is to contact companies that offer the same services as you do. You can offer assistance in the form of outsourcing parts of other companies’ projects.

Start small

If you are new to the market, try to earn credentials offering small projects that would be easier to get for you.

How to reach new customers and build business relationships properly?

Read a few useful tips:

  1. Understand
    Try not to base on cultural stereotypes as it’s business, not personal relationship. Respect the religious holidays and never talk about politics unless you are asked to do so.
  2. Remember the time difference
    If you commit to deadline, stick to it, no matter what. Respect not only business but also lunch hours and local habits.
  3. Always ask
    To avoid various misunderstandings, learn what is now common sense in your business partner’s environment first.
  4. Work on language
    Business partners can have different levels of language fluency. Make communication as simple as possible. Use short sentences, be careful with jokes.
  5. Be careful about money
    Trust is crucial, but business is business, so don’t be gullible, especially at the beginning. When it comes to prices, if possible, set them on a level that fit your and foreign country at the same time.
righthello customers

We at RightHello use cold emailing to approach potential new customers abroad. Mostly because it’s the easiest and most effective way to reach anybody anywhere.

How does it work?

We find contacts of companies we want to target (we have an searching app that makes this easier for us amd our clients). Then we prepare short witty and personalized email copy. Then we send them out and start waiting for reponses. If there is not reply – we follow-up, remind about us. Positive responses we deliver to our salespeople who are working on closing the deals. You can learn about generating leads with cold emails – here. Overall this method shows great results, like up to 40 to 1 ROI from one campaign.

If you are interested in how to find customers with cold emailing – schedule a call with our specialists, who will guide you through the process.

What’s next?

When you get your first customers abroad, getting more new clients will work as a snowball with the help of references and recommendations. Many of our clients who decided to break into foreign markets are now opening their offices there. I hope these tips will help your business to do the same!

Feel free to ask us questions and learn from our case studies.

You may also like:

Want to learn about the future of sales?

Join our newsletter!

Dasha

Dasha Oliinyk

Efficiency freak: passionate about marketing, branding and communication. Writing about B2B marketing and lead generation based on the experience I get while working for RightHello. Her fav book is Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. Crazy about The Beatles.

  • As always some great tips. Especially the one, mentioning, that we should focus on cities, instead of countries, thats a good one.

    • Dasha Oliinyk

      Thank you, Sascha! Nothing motivates the writer more than the readers’ credit 🙂
      If you have some ideas what other topics you would like us to cover – please, feel free to share.

      • Great insights you got there. Recently i was asking someone about the possibility of selling
        $1000 – $5000/PM digital marketing services abroad/online. And the answers i got aligned
        with all you said here. Thanks a lot.

        Next topic you could cover – B2B lead generation before the cold call or email.
        If you got blog posts on that already, you could send me.

  • Himanshu Aundhe

    Great article!

  • Abhishek Dhas

    Loved the article Dasha. Just realized that Starting Small is so important. We expand into other markets thinking big and it’s really easy to get caught up in country related stuff rather than focusing on smaller parts which sometimes cover all the important parts of the country.

  • Siddharth Sharma

    Nice Article.We penetrated the market getting good response internationally in Android & iOs apps.