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Tips Before Selling Abroad!

Expanding your business beyond borders can be an exhilarating prospect, but it’s crucial to ensure your business is truly ready for the leap. As a seasoned observer of entrepreneurial ventures, I often find myself contemplating the critical factors that determine successful international expansion. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you navigate this pivotal decision.

Assessing Your Current Position

Firstly, let’s establish a baseline. If your business isn’t generating at least $50,000 monthly in the USA, it’s likely premature to consider expanding overseas. Scaling within your current market might be a more prudent strategy until you achieve a stable revenue flow.

Scaling Within Your Base Country

Many businesses face the challenge of breaking the $4,000 per day revenue barrier. If you find yourself in this position, focusing on scaling within your base country should be your primary objective. Creative diversification and overcoming internal barriers are key steps towards achieving sustainable growth.

Considering Early Expansion Scenarios

There are exceptions, of course. If your business operates in a niche market within a small country with limited growth potential, early international expansion might make sense. However, ensure this decision is grounded in thorough market research and feasibility studies.

The Path to Profitability

Profitability is non-negotiable before venturing into new territories. Once you’ve maximized growth opportunities in your current country and achieved consistent profitability, expanding abroad becomes a realistic next step.

Practical Considerations for Expansion

1. Profitability Analysis:

Before expanding, meticulously evaluate profitability factors such as tax rates, shipping costs, and expected revenue per market. Each country presents unique challenges that can impact your bottom line significantly.

2. Shipping Logistics:

International shipping costs can quickly escalate, especially if you offer free shipping. Testing a new market from your current warehouse can provide valuable insights into customer acquisition costs and feasibility.

3. Tax Implications:

Taxation varies widely across borders and can affect your profitability equation. For instance, the VAT rates in different European countries can substantially alter your required Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) for profitability.

Practical Steps Forward

To illustrate, imagine you’re based in the USA, where achieving a 1.5 ROAS might suffice. However, expanding to Australia, with its higher shipping costs and taxes, might necessitate a higher ROAS of 2.5 to break even.

Understanding your shipping costs and taxes will help you make better decisions about where to expand by analyzing your profits.

Build Your Creative Strategy

When it comes to your creative strategy, you need to decide if you’ll make new creatives for each market or use the ones you already have. This might change depending on the country.

Evaluate Cultural Differences

When testing your marketing creatives in a new country, it’s helpful to start with your current assets, especially if the audiences are similar, as is the case between the US and Canada. However, a creative that works well in the US might not resonate as effectively in Europe due to different cultures, values, and styles. Tailoring your approach to the local audience is essential. If you plan to test your successful US creatives in other countries, don’t expect the same results. Different cultural backgrounds mean that what works in one place might not work in another, and you may need new creatives that focus on local customers. One strategy to consider when entering new markets is testing lookalike audiences—new people likely to be interested in your business because they share similar characteristics with your existing customers. However, keep in mind that with the constant changes at Meta, results may vary per brand.

Branching Out Creatives

Do you want to test a new market for the lowest cost and effort? Start with your English website and winning ads.

Once the new market shows potential, you can invest more money and energy into localizing your website and ads to further improve your ad performance.

I believe the best path for most brands is:

  • Start with your English website and ads

  • Localize your website and ads with AI voiceover

  • Hire local creators to film content and compare the ad performance with the AI voiceovers

  • Scale what performs best for you

How to Set Up Your Ad Account

Setting up your ad account depends on your situation. If you’re targeting both the US and

Canada, the simplest approach is to have one ad account with two separate campaigns for each country. This is the easiest way to manage it. Alternatively, you can have one campaign with separate ad sets for each country, each with its own ads. However, this method can mix results at the campaign level, making it harder to analyze performance. Typically, sales from Canada won’t always match sales from the US. If you started in Canada, your Canadian sales are probably stronger than your US sales. The CPA, ROAS, and even CPMs might differ between the two countries. Combining them into one campaign can skew your data, so you need to check each ad set's performance individually. It’s better to have a new campaign for a specific market, demographic, or product. This approach lets you compare data equally at the campaign, ad set, and ad levels, allowing Meta’s algorithm to better understand who to target without skewing the data.

How We Can Help You

Whenever you’re ready, here is a way we can help you…

If you’re looking for a creative partner who will handle your entire creative production, deliver winning ads every month, and help you scale, apply to work with us here. We have worked with brands like HexClad, BestSelf, Product Hunt, Morning Brew, and others.

Thank you for taking the time to read our blog! We hope you found the insights and information valuable. At The Preppy Family, we're committed to empowering businesses and sharing knowledge that drives success.

Your support means the world to us. If you have any questions, comments, or topics you'd like us to cover, please feel free to reach out. We're always here to help and eager to hear your thoughts.

Stay connected with us for more tips, updates, and stories. Here’s to many more years of learning and growing together!

With gratitude,

The Preppy Family Team

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