With the upcoming Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in 2018 in Korea the opportunity for business is now. If you don’t know already Korea is the fourth largest economy in Asia and the 11th in the world with a population of 5.4 million. If you are a business who wants to move into the Asian market the time to is now.
With any important business decision though you want to and need to minimize the risk and this is especially true when moving into a new territory.
We’ve put together 4 things that you should do when starting your journey into the Korean market.
Start with research
This is the staple of any major decision, do your research. Remember that consumer behavior differs from country to country. This is especially true of the Korean consumer who spend a great deal of time online.
In Korea people don’t ‘Google it’ they ‘Naver it’. Naver is the dominant search engine in Korea with 75% of the market share, it’s closest rival Daum holds only 14% of the market and Google just 9%.
While you can find out a lot about the Korean territory via Google you will find out more using Naver. This can be a challenge even if you have Korean language knowledge so consider getting help. However, statistics and trends can be found through Google.
Someone in country
Once you’ve done your basic research and you have decided to move forward it is advisable to find someone to can help or represent you at least at the beginning.
Use an agent that understands the territory. This can help you save on high costs, operate effectively within the regulations, get the use of established networks and benefit from local knowledge and experience.
Understanding the culture
This can be a challenge for even the largest companies and lack of understanding has been the downfall of many.
Like in many territories Korea has its way of doing things and sometimes they may seem illogical to people outside the country. This is when localization comes into play; this could be adjusting your website, creating a Naver blog or changing your packaging.
An example might be a health product that you want to bring into Korea. It is possible you would have to change some of the formula to meet Korean standards or you may need to reword the promises on your website to avoid unnecessary legal issues.
Find your cash cow
Korea is very much a trend society, if you can find a product that Koreans like then you will sell a great deal. The negative of the trend society is that you can also fall out of favor quickly.
The secret is to make sure that you give quality and good customer service. As the domestic wealth has grown in Korea so has the expectation of products and customer service. One of the reasons European products like Burberry have done so well is because of quality.
You don’t need to be the next Burberry but you need to care about your product and the way its presented.
The 2018 Winter Olympics creates a great opportunity for businesses who want to enter the Korean market. Koreans continue to love foreign products and this shows in their spending habits. Take the next step in your business growth and consider the Korean market.
World Markets Korea is based in Seoul and is operated by a New Zealander and a British national who have over 20 years of experience in Korea. Offering consulting, online marketing and event management they help companies successfully enter the market.
You can contact them at: firstname.lastname@example.org