Slow and Fast
We think you need to commit three years to building business in India – but when you first go be ready for anything because demand can be instant. Or not. A careful understanding of the market and assessment of whether it is right for you is essential.
Price and Relationship
We know Indians chase a bargain. But price alone is not enough for longevity in India – you need to build relationships. I would build the relationship first, because anyone can undercut your price.
Status and Money
Status in a hierarchical society such as India is paramount. But now so is money. Making it. Showing it. If your product combines status and money it is a good fit. When there, be careful to fully respect the status of whoever you are dealing with.
“India” and “Many Indias”
India is not one market – it combines many languages and cultures, with people in one part of the country not even being able to understand people in another part. We begin by understanding the regional differences between north, south, east and west – but this is only the beginning of drilling deep to know who you are dealing with and who you are targeting. Beware someone who promises to take you “across India” in one major campaign.
Step one is to get some good market research – the only safe and sound beginning. Add to that some cross-cultural training.
Time, knowledge and patience are the keys.
Stephen Manallack speaking at Australia India Business Council function