The traditional model for young start-ups has been to establish a foothold in the United States for a couple years, before branching out to Europe and Asia. These traditional models are out of date and only constrict your company's growth potential.
The United States used to be worth twice as much as Europe and three times that of Asia. Times have changed though; the world is becoming one market, a global market. The language of this global market is currency, which can take on multiple forms, but it's uniting all. If you aren't doing business in Europe and Asia, that's 2/3's of your potential revenue streams you are missing out on.
Skeptics believe going international is too expensive, too risky, or too time consuming. This is nonsense. Cost concerns come with every important business decision. Planning and research will help you better understand the costs and figure out if it's a reasonable business opportunity. You cannot disregard international opportunities assuming the costs are going to be too high, do your research.
Taking risks is one of the most important aspects of being a successful entrepreneur, according to Limor Fried who was voted Entrepreneur of 2012. If you do not take risks, how are you supposed to grow? If you fail, learn from it. There are many strategies to buffer against risk. Notably, localizing your business is one of the best ways to do it. Offering your product website in multiple languages is one way and partnering with or acquiring a local company can open many doors and give you an insight into the local customs and culture.
International markets should be very attractive for start-ups in this global economy. So, young start-ups, get aggressive and go international before you miss out on global opportunities.
globalEDGE has a wide range of resources for taking your business international, feel free to check them out: