Alix de Sagazan, co-founder of AB Tasty, French leader in online split testing, gives us her tips about international business development.
Why did you develop your business internationally?
AB Tasty is the solution to optimize your website performance. It gives you performance indicators thanks to its software's marketing tests results. Our software was working well in France, so we thought it would be easier to launch it in countries where the markets are similar to France. We are now established in the UK, Germany and in Spain and have opened an office in Sydney. Moreover, the establishment of regional offices was a necessary step to service our international customers.
What makes your international development successful?
We had a network of key contacts on site, native agents, who first enabled us to obtain market studies, knowledge of the business and social environment and who could bring a potential revenue in their country.
What are the challenges you faced during this process?
Beyond the regulatory differences, which required a certain time to adapt to, closing with our first clients in a different language made the process more complicated. Red tape was also an issue because every country works differently. Through these issues, we realized how important it was to be present on site with the right people. As GE so well implemented: Think Global, Act Local.
Which mistake is to be avoided if you want to internationalize your business?
Do not open an office without having contacts, on-site knowledge, except if you have a special opportunity or for an experiment, as we have done with our Sydney office. It is tempting to reproduce a successful model everywhere, but stretching a business is risky. Regional markets, and in our case the European ones, are large enough, especially when competing models already exists locally.
As entrepreneur, we need to exchange, share, we need to be supported by an international network of peers. Beeleev is more than useful to create this network. It was very helpful whenever we planned to establish our business in a new country. It is hard to take a leap of faith alone. With Beeleev, we gained advice, support from our peers and a felt much safer.