How Latin American Companies Can Market and Operate in the USA
The United States has printed trillions of dollars, but the currency is still strong. In countries like Colombia, Mexico, Argentina, even Brazil, their currencies are suffering; the same goes for all the Middle Eastern countries’ and some in Europe.
This means that earning or making US dollars or exporting or selling services in the United States and Canada is very valuable to Latin American companies. However, there’s a barrier for entry.
Businesses In Latin America
Suppose you’re a Latin American manufacturer, B2B company, service-based business, or eCommerce store. If you want to sell to the United States, branding is huge in the United States, along with trust and authority.
Give us a case scenario.
Let’s say you’re a Colombian B2B manufacturer. You manufacture product X and want to get into the US market or improve visibility.
What is the first set of steps that you would follow?
Miami marketing is the gateway from South America, into the US market. Prospects always have questions about this challenge. Building up your brand organically in the United States is very difficult, sometimes impossible.
What is the solution?
Generate some online PR. This gets buzz going around your brand, product, or services.
Online PR lets you make the strongest impact in a short period of time. When you start, no one knows who you are. Your site is in a completely different country. Even some organic SEO is very difficult.
Public Relations For Any Good Or Service
What is the PR process? How does it benefit you in the long run?
Do you have a good website? Do you have calls to action on each page? Is it hosted in the United States? Host it in the United States. Maybe a firm can fix that problem with a CDN.
Are you structurally ready to start talking to prospects and clients in the US? If the answer is yes, then the next step should be doing a brand visibility audit or brand report on what you have currently.
If a customer runs a Google search on your brand, do they see positive news items? When someone googles your brand on the search results, do they see your Facebook, LinkedIn Instagram, or business website? Is it all optimized?
Step three is building your brand visibility. A company builds your brand offering and will present to the consumer potential customers you have in the United States.
Get visibility on publications like Forbes, Inc, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, CNN, Yahoo Business, and more. When somebody Googles your brand name, they will see your writing. That tells them you are an expert.
Many business owners think this only works if they are B2C. That is in fact not the case. Visibility builds up your credibility from a B2B standpoint as well.
Let’s say you’re a manufacturer trying to find buyers in the United States. They want to know if you’re a reputable business. Writing for publications is how you build that credibility. So regardless of whether you want to be B2B, B2C, or both, this is still the strategy that you need to implement.
It might make sense for you to get a distributor in the United States or have an entity in the United States. Consider consulting on needing an American company because if you’re a foreigner, you can start an incorporation in the state of Florida, for $100. You don’t have to be a US citizen. Start your company operations.
Then you become a US business. You might not have an office here; get a virtual one. Presenting yourself makes the difference
However, if you do B2C– sell directly to consumers, that changes the costs. If you have 1,000 SKUs, it may cost you $250 to $1,000 to half a million dollars to have a warehouse here, operation, and this and that. You don’t need that.
What is the alternative?
All you need is a 3PL, a third party logistics partner. You ship a couple of pallets of product; they store it, and you only pay them two dollars for every order that you send.
Many Latin American businesses don’t know that you could actually sell on Amazon with Prime, that you could actually ship products to Amazon, fulfill from Amazon. Optimum7 first helps you with the PR and branding aspects. Then the marketers can fulfill all the other stages.
Obstacles In The Long-Term
What about customs costs?
The customs fees, those are worked into the margins as well. Even so, business is still profitable at the end of the day.
Clients sometimes let this obstacle hold them back. They say, “My margins aren’t that high,” because they also have customs fees on top of the fulfillment. At the end of the day, if you’re a manufacturer, you have no problem. Work those into your margins and be profitable at the end of the day.
Ninety percent of the products that are consumed in the United States come from abroad. Every business has those issues. Optimum7 imports merchandise from Europe, as well from Eastern Europe. Custom issues don’t matter; if your product and brand are quality, American consumers are willing to pay the price for the quality.
The extra expense doesn’t apply to the commodity items. If you’re selling coffee, for example, by the ton, then it’s not a problem. You have to compete on price, because you’re selling to distributors. However, if you have your own brand, packaging, and brand, then it’s fair game to actually price it at something that represents the quality of your product.
For Latin American companies that are doing over $5 million in annual business, you have to have some sort of visibility and leg in the United States. Making that US dollar is worthwhile.