Sometimes I feel like the grim reaper. Every day it seems I’m telling a new foreign brand that they don’t have what it takes to be successful in China. Luckily, my “kiss of death” isn’t permanent.
Just because you’re not ready TODAY doesn’t mean you’re doomed. We’ve noticed a very specific set of characteristics that signal that a brand has an excellent shot at “making it” in China.
1) Your business is big enough to fund China expansion
It’s no secret that launching in a new market takes resources. The “sweet spot” for sales revenues seems to be the $50M + before entering China. While as easy, in my experience anyone doing over $30M in sales can usually build a successful business here IF…
2) You’re well-established with Chinese consumers
You’ve got great traction in your home market and Chinese consumers have taken notice. If there’s an active gray market for your products in China that’s a great sign.
3) You have a growth mindset
This is KEY. When I talk about “growth mindset” I mean that you need the ability to rapidly adapt to changing market conditions, operate intensely, engage consumers in real time, and be willing to tailor your business to China. If you expect to enter China doing “what you’ve always done” DON’T BOTHER.
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