Growing your market in Africa requires a strategic approach that takes into consideration the diverse cultural, social, and economic factors that exist in the continent.
Here are six steps that can help you grow your market in Africa
STEP 1: Do market research
Like with any new venture, you need to do thorough market research to see if the demand is available and what you may need to tweak to reach the African market you would like to enter into. Besides doing a Google search or watching the news, it is important to go to the country and see the market for yourself. This will help you to see who your potential competitors will be, and who you could possibly collaborate with.
STEP 2: Design products for Africa
When you want to bring your products into Africa ensure they have African appeal. This doesn’t mean they need to be cheap but rather they need to cater to the needs of the African market you want to enter. It is important to remember Africa is made up of many different cultures, social structures and economies so you may not be able to use the same product over a broad range of countries.
In addition, you need to consider the main local language used in the country you want to enter. Even if they do speak English, they will have certain words which are specific to their region that you may not know.
STEP 3: Collaborate with local businesses
The easiest way to network and find your footing in a new market is to collaborate with a local business. By joining them, you will have access to local market research and also be able to know how to navigate the legal avenues you need to take to start a business in your country of choice. You will also get the inside scope of business etiquette for the culture you choose to do business with.
STEP 4: Use technology
With mobile phone users increasing rapidly throughout the continent, using tech for your business is crucial. You can create apps for your business, use digital payments, use digital marketing, integrate chatbots, and have booking or ordering capabilities online.
STEP 5: Offer diverse payment methods
Though mobile technology is booming in the urban areas of Africa, there are still some people who are unbanked and sceptical about putting their credit card details online. With this in mind, it is important to look at alternative payment strategies. You could consider payment on receipt of goods or send them a payment code which they can then go pay for at a popular shop.
STEP 6: Invest in your own logistics division
Many countries in Africa lack quality transport and logistics infrastructure. If delivering your service or product is a key component of your business, you would be advised to review the transport and logistics infrastructure in the country you want to enter. With this knowledge, you will be able to see to what extent you will need to invest in your own logistics division.
Though Africa may be viewed as uncharted territory by many brands, through careful planning and execution you can expand your global footprint into Africa.
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