Former Dragons’ Den stars are an inspiration to us all

At Tuesday’s Go Global event in London, organised by Enterprise Nation, three former Dragons’ Den stars inspired us all to just get out there and “Go Global”. As David Cameron reminded us all again earlier this week, Britain needs to export more and wants more entrepreneurs to get out of their comfort zone and start selling. This not only provides a job for them, but in the long term will create jobs for others.

At the event, three former Dragons’ Den contestants told us how there were starting to go global. Kate Castle, founder of BoginaBag, told us how her product (with the help of Theo Paphitis) is now being distributed in France and hopes to soon be available in four other European countries.

Tony Curtis of Alago, despite getting a big thumbs down from the Dragons last year, is now getting a big thumbs up from the general public and sports professionals for his range of heated sports gloves. Knowing that his product would sell anywhere in the world, Tony went global straight away and now has distributors in several countries.

There was then the huge success story of the Trunki! Rob Law, creator of the Trunki, was turned down by the Dragons in dramatic style. 5 years, 1m units, 50 awards and a £4m business valuation later, the Trunki is now a worldwide success. Rob is exporting into 62 countries around the world and has signed a licensing agreement with toy giant Melissa & Doug in the USA.

These three success stories were a true inspiration to all attendees, entrepreneurs and businesses big or small, at the Go Global event on Tuesday. But how did they start to internationalise their business?

For anyone thinking about exporting, here are the key messages from the event:

  • While there are still export opportunities within Europe, it is worth looking outside the EU. Europe is not a growth market, so look to other markets where there is high growth, such as: China (160%), Brazil (135%), India (102%)
  • Use Google’s Global Market Finder to help you identify your key markets for export
  • Use Google Analytics to see from where in the world your website traffic is coming
  • Use social media to talk to your customers. Linked In and Twitter for B2B, Facebook and Twitter for B2C
  • Communicate with your customers in their own language
  • Translate your website and ensure that international search engine optimisation (SEO) is carried out by native speakers
  • Don’t trust Google Translate to deliver your key marketing messages!
  • Use the UKTI website for advice on cultural aspects of doing business abroad
  • When selecting a distributor in market, ask lots of questions!
  • Work closely with distributors in market. They need your regular support.

For information on how Comtec Translations can help you to Go Global, please call us on 01926 335 681 or go to www.comtectranslations.co.uk.

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