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  • Exporter Self-Assessment Tool

Exporter Self-Assessment Tool

Assess your export readiness


1. Assessing your Competitive Advantage

Convincing potential buyers that your product or service is the best is how you succeed in any market, particularly globally. To do this, you need to first understand your competitive advantage. 
Your competitive advantage should not be cost or price. Instead, think about other qualities such as reliability, service support, warranty, margins, market customization or promotional support. These are examples of advantages that differentiate a product or service from the competition.
If you have no clearly defined competitive advantage for your product or service, this is a great place to start your journey. The following resources will help you develop a clear and concise competitive advantage so you can ultimately deliver a better pitch for buyers and investors.
If you do have a sense of your competitive advantage, the next step is understanding how your product or service compares to the competition. If you want to understand why your product or service is the best choice for consumers, you have to be aware of competing options. The following resources will help you identify where your business fits in the bigger picture.
Good to hear! A solid understanding of your competitive advantage and how it compares to your competitors is an important step in export readiness. However, the next steps of perfecting the delivery of your competitive advantage and understanding your target market can be challenging. The following resources will help you define your pitch and research your target market.

2. Assessing your Market Research

A critical step in export readiness is ensuring there is a market for your product or service. This often involves significant amounts of research.
No worries, there is no better time to start this research. The following resources will help you get your research started, including the NSBI Trade Market Intelligence (TMI) service.
Good news, you've started your market research. It is best to be fully prepared before entering a new market. The following resources will help you become a market expert.
Sounds like you are ready to go to market. The following resources will help you plan accordingly.

3. Assessing your Distribution and Sales Channels

The term channels refers to how you distribute and sell your product or service to customers. This may involve intermediaries or agents.
Let's get started on defining your sales and distribution channels. The following resources will guide you through the initial steps.
Good news, you've already started defining your sales and distribution channels. The following resources will help you confirm your channels.
Excellent, with well-established channels you are ready to go. The following resources will help with your continued export planning. 

4. Assessing your Financial Resources

Breaking into a new market requires a considerable amount of both time and financial resources. This includes conducting or paying for research, travelling to and from markets, creating a brand and marketing strategy, developing an advertising campaign and sales promotions, attending trade fairs, providing training, and much more.
We can help you better understand how to become financially prepared to enter new export markets. The following resources will get you started.  
Addressing every financial challenge associated with entering a new market is challenging. The following resources will help you get export ready.
That's great! Keep in mind, even with adequate financial resources, there may be areas to improve. The following resources will help you with export growth ideas.

5. Assessing your Management Expertise

Successful exporting requires a management team that is not only committed to the idea of developing export markets, but has the relevant experience.
While it's exciting to enter a new area of expertise, it can also be very challenging. We recommend learning about options to to help you improve the knowledge, skills and competencies of your team. The resources below will help you build the right balance of people on your management team.
That's a great start. Try leveraging your team's experience by having them expand and then share their knowledge base. The following resources will get you started.
Heading into a new market with an experienced team is a solid approach. The following resources will help you build on that expertise with export specific insights.

6. Assessing your Export Strategy

An export strategy is where you see your business in two, five and 10 years. It should include where you are now, how you got there, your product and service offering, the markets you are present in, future markets, and revenues and profitability. 
The six questions you just answered should help outline your export strategy. The resources below will help you get started on your export strategy.
That's certainly better than no plan. The resources below will help you complete your current plan and improve your preparedness.
Great news! The resource below will help you double check and ensure you have comprehensive export strategy.

Exporter Self Assessment Results:


Resource List:
The following is a summary of the resources relevant to your specific assessment results. These resources address your specific levels of readiness, and can help you prepare for the next viable steps in growing your exporting efforts.
1. Competitive Advantage
2. Market Research
3. Distribution and Sales Channels
4. Financial Resources
5. Management Expertise
6. Export Strategy

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Royce Winsten

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