North Carolina Department of Commerce
Helping Overseas Companies Bring Products to Market
When the North Carolina Department of Commerce gathered companies together wanting to export into Europe, they started with the English-speaking United Kingdom. Reaching out to their market representative for the UK, TFDI (Trade and Foreign Direct Investment), the company appointed Rockfine Associate Michelle Dalton to the case.
The first step involved a trip to North Carolina to meet with the government organisation and the companies interested in accessing the UK market. Michelle’s meetings involved introduction to their product or service, their business model, overview of current revenue streams and financial position, and goals within the UK. The range of companies spanned several industries: roof-top carrier bags, non-destructive testing for aircraft wings, beer-based hair products, digitally-printed promotional stickers, high-speed power boats and even clever plastic travel containers.
Stage two involved either a market research report or attendance at an industry-specific tradeshow.
Market reports are quite intense as producing something of significance is the ultimate goal. Michelle would often contact 150+ prospective partners, distributors or customers to gauge interest in the product or service, determine price point and competitors, and potentially arrange a meeting. If enough meetings were obtained it could warrant the company coming over and attending the meetings in person, which is most ideal and resulted in the most tangible results.
For those attending a tradeshow with support from Michelle, the same process of pre-setting appointments and gauging interest in the product or service happened several weeks ahead of the tradeshow. Then during the show Michelle produced a briefing report for each meeting, attended and assisted the company in necessary follow-up.
Market access is a fascinating process and while somewhat formulaic, needs to be flexible to accommodate the nuances of each company and product or service.
“I had the pleasure to work with Michelle during the 2013 Paris Air Show! I cannot give Michelle enough compliments on the hard work she put into this event. Michelle worked diligently to setup meetings with multiple potential customers for PEMMCO. It would be awesome to get the opportunity to work on more projects with Michelle!” Brian Powell, PEMMCO Manufacturing
“We had the pleasure of working with Michelle at the Paris Air Show to expand NLAD’s market penetration in Europe. Michelle is a true professional with an inspiring work ethic.” Richard Webster, NLA Diagnostics