June 7th, 2012
Two weeks ago, CNNMoney published this brief article on the global economic shift, indicating that money is moving in Asia’s favor. With a primary focus on Singapore, Peter Pham writes:
“If traders would stop and look beyond the U.S. and Europe, they would see what legendary investor (and current Singapore resident) Jim Rogers sees: money is fleeing the West and heading East.”
For insurance companies (and all other B2B organizations), this obviously means that there is a growing market over there and the potential for success is high. On the other hand, with these insurance prospects located nearly half the world away, attempts to contact them would require only the latest in communications technology.
First, you have websites. In the old days, exploration and expeditions shrunk the world by filling up the blank places on the map. Today, the world has shrunk even further as the online realm bridges gaps between nations.
Following websites, you also have email. Not only is it less intrusive compared to previous methods, communication through it can allow enough space and time to fully write out the complex concerns that usually arise from insurance.
Thirdly (and speaking of previous methods), telemarketing is still also viable because while you might have to adjust to a difference in time zone, telemarketing in Singapore can reach a busy prospect during moments when internet-based attempts aren’t faring so well.
You also have a bit of advertising on your side. Web banners that are attractive but at the same time can provoke further inquiry could be all you need to start qualifying B2B sales leads. On that note though, it’s important to always emphasize on that: further inquiry.
If there’s one thing a time zone can indicate, it’s that time itself is scarce in business. It still doesn’t matter how fast your message gets sent or how accessible your website is during any part of the day. The actual time that a foreign prospect will encounter you either way is when you’re fast asleep at home. It doesn’t matter whether you’re the one contacting them or you’ve outsourced lead generation companies to represent you. Time must not be wasted during the entire exchange. When you’re trying to attract foreign attention, it must be the type that sparks further inquiry and not keep them hanging about when they still have other things to do.
You can’t afford to waste time yourself so it’s only right that you don’t try and take up too much of other people’s time. Regardless of how you reach out, engaging a prospect musn’t demand too much of their busy day. This goes from the moment you first try to connect with them, all the way to setting an appointment.
Expanding your market beyond national borders has always been a big step. But with a wider market, that only means you have more targets that will divide your attention many more times than when you were still catering to local businesses. Still, with the way the market is now shifting, it might be your only chance of keeping business afloat. Don’t wait until the economic environment around you dries up. Expand your horizons and use what you can to reach out across the world as quickly as possible.