Help your business to grow internationally by improving your global communications
An International Communications Review (ICR) can help you grow your international sales revenues by overcoming language and cultural barriers such as:
- poor sales because your promotional literature or website does not take account of cultural differences
- contracts exposing your company to commercial risks if they have not been professionally translated
- orders not being processed if they are in a language your company has no skills in
The ICR takes account of your company’s written, spoken, and digital communications with your export markets, and an agreed focus for the review upon a certain market or upon certain export activities such as:
- press releases, promotional materials, catalogues and packaging
- technical documentation and manuals
- preparation for presentations and trade shows
- relationships with your international sales channel such as agents and distributors
- international sales and invoicing processes
- handling foreign phone calls and emails
- training, recruitment, and working with export staff
- your website and social media strategy
- promotion of your website in overseas markets
- selling online and e-commerce
What is an International Communications Review?
It involves a comprehensive international communications audit and is conducted by an International Communications Consultant (ICC). Each ICC has international experience and is currently managing a business in the communications field. They have all have been rigorously trained and have access to the latest resources and information in order to provide professional and independent guidance to exporters.
By overcoming the cultural and language barriers that come between your business and overseas trade and by improving communications with global clients, the ICR may increase the enquiries arising from the Internet, improve relations with export clients, increase traffic through sales channels, and improve overall business performance.
Your company can benefit from a series of reviews to support your international business development. During each review, the consultant will spend around two to three hours with you and your export team, discussing your current export strategy and international activities.
An ICR is particularly relevant when you are:
- Challenged by a particular market
- Embarking upon a trade show, mission, or other important overseas trips such as customer negotiation, distributor selection, or market research
- Launching a new product range or service
- Considering a new route to market
- Updating or translating international marketing materials
- Developing, updating, or translating international web pages
- Tackling a new market, especially a ‘difficult’ one.
What you’ll get
Once the International Communications Review has taken place, you’ll receive a tailored report and action plan with recommendations. It will include (depending on your chosen scope and objectives):
- a review of your current communications against international best practice – including written, telephone, face-to-face, and electronic communications
- information about identifying possible third party suppliers and relative costs to implement the recommendations
- ‘how to’ guides with more detailed advice on implementing recommendations
What happens in a review?
- Face-to-face or Skype meeting with senior management and/or export staff
- Discussion about existing communications in export markets using best practise checklists
- Identification of strengths and weaknesses
- Discussion of suppliers sources and likely costs
- Development of an agreed action plan
- Provision of a detailed and confidential written report with ‘how-to-guides’ containing advice on implementing recommendations.
What might be reviewed?
- Global web strategy
- International social networking
- Marketing, operational, packaging, and training materials
- Handling of international sales and technical enquiries
- Overseas meetings and presentations
- Preparation for international visits such as trade missions and exhibitions
- Communications with agents, distributors, and partners overseas.
The International Communications Review for websites
Many companies now rely upon their web presence to promote and sell their products and services. The ICR can review the effectiveness of your web presence to communicate with potential international costumers and to generate export business.
A specific web review offers a comprehensive analysis of your web strategy, covering elements such as:
- Web strategy development
- Website internationalisation technical challenges
- Site design, structure, and navigation for overseas visitors
- International content
- Translation and localisation
- Website promotion including multilingual search engine optimisation (SEO)
- Development of a broader global online presence
- Monitoring traffic and the site performance
- Managing the impact of a successful site.
What are the benefits of an International Communications Review?
- Independent professional advice and strategic thinking
- Action plan for improving international communications
- Confidence to trade with new and challenging markets
- Increased number of new and relevant enquiries
- Improved visibility on foreign web searches
- Increased competitiveness by localising your messages
- An independent analysis of your current global communications
International Communications Review Testimonials
“We’ve had previous experience of government-funded business consultants and we understand why consultancy is the route through which EU funding is delivered – rather than executive or practical services – but have, in the past, found the process of marginal use. However, on this occasion, the advice provided and time spent on the review was more than justified. We have gained enormous insight from Doug Lawrence’s review and most of the recommendations have already been implemented, including three new foreign language websites in French, German and Spanish for our firm BAV Crushers.”
Marcus Clay, Director, BAV Crushers, Staffordshire, UK
“Money well spent. The report looks very informative and I am impressed with the level of analysis and detail, also with clarity of recommendations. You also produced the report quickly which is much appreciated.”
John Showell, MD, Product Approvals, Shropshire, UK
“We have received the report and would like to take this opportunity to thank Doug for his time and excellent report.” Andrew Hawtin, Antiwave, C&W
“We honestly can’t praise highly enough the quality and detail of the report Doug has complied for us.”
Andy Spooner, Midland Flags, Staffordshire
“We were very pleased with Doug Lawrence’s excellent contribution and we will be using his recommendations as an action plan.”
Chris Rimell, MD, LATCO Engineering, H&W
“Doug’s report was excellent and included a whole list of improvements we could easily implement to present ourselves better internationally… Already, the number of visitors from North America has increased fourfold, we have received a significant purchase enquiry and are in discussions with a key distributor… and for those aiming to increase international businesses strategically, have an [ICR]!”
“And we’ve recently ‘internationalised’ our website. We commissioned an Export Communication Review from UKTI to guide our approach and, within a month of going live, we’d generated £20,000 worth of sales in Germany.”
Each International Communications Review costs GBP £500 plus VAT (or EUR 600/ USD 600 delivered remotely).
How to apply
Please contact me to discuss how an ICR can benefit your business.
About the consultant
Doug Lawrence was previously accredited to deliver the former UKTI Export Communications Review (ECR) he has used this experience to develop a new, independent, service called the International Communications Review (ICR) which will help you to develop an international communications strategy to trade more successfully with international markets.