In a new market, including overseas, it can be tough to build a stable reputation. The initial interaction someone has with your company, products, and services, establishes a first impression. With that in mind, I’d like to give you some pointers for shaping your brand internationally.

After all of your work establishing a recognizable brand through designing logos, naming products, and creating company-wide uniformity, you want to keep it, right? Of course you do. Your goals shouldn’t change just because you are expanding globally. Though you may have to update your brand and distribution approach to fulfill cultural expectations.

Make sure you have a market.
Are there other competitors in the area? If so, what sets your brand apart? If there is a market, but no competitors, find out why.

Ensure you can deliver

Check to see that your product can be manufactured or transported to the new market area. Does it meet local standards? Know the proper labeling of products, use of chemicals, disposal of goods, and construction of components.
Re-examine your business and/or product names
When you choose a company or product name to sell in foreign markets, you need to be culturally sensitive. Also, verify that product names mean the same in English and in the local translation.

Revamp your logo
Take a look at your logo. Make sure you don’t use wording or symbols that may be offensive in a foreign market. Consulting a branding or design firm in that area or an international firm may be necessary.

Know shipping requirements
What are the laws, customs, and packaging requirements? Will your product be hung, placed on a shelf, etc? Also, check to see that your packaging meets transportation standards.

Register trademarks and domain names
You still want to keep your patent and trademarks in a new market. Take steps to do so. An additional thought is making sure the Internet domain name for your business is accessible. You still want to register a dot-com, which is the most popular domain worldwide for businesses.

If you follow these steps, it will bring you closer to creating and keeping a recognizable brand reputation, as well as a successful international business.

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