It may be a good time to enter the China market now but it is not an easy task. Many have failed entry into the China market as they do not fully understand the seriousness of the complications of the Chinese business culture in the China market.
China is growing as such a fast rate that many foreign companies are attracted to it. However, foreign investors need to understand China itself as a country economically and culturally.
China market is a good investment but also a big problem to many foreign companies. Due to language and culture barriers, many foreign companies do not have the ability to communicate in the China market and many ideas and opportunities are interpreted the wrong way. Hence, foreign companies would need to fully understand the Chinese culture and language before entering the China market.
The China market also works in a way that networking is an important tool among the locals. The Chinese feel that relationship (“guan xi”) is the method to work around the China market. Having a good relationship with others will aid in paperwork and procedures and minimize any problems or issues. For example, if a new local company wants to register itself with the government, having “guan xi” with some government officials will allow the company to know how to go about registration and what to look out for.
Foreign companies would also need to do up a detailed China market research as the China market is considered to be relatively new compared to that of the US and Europe. Thus, foreign companies would need to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the China market.
In addition, a up-to-date consumer research would also need to be done. The local consumers play a big role in the China market and with more of them getting more affluent, their needs and wants are changing over the years. Thus, an updated consumer research is important to the marketing strategy and product development of foreign investors.
However, conducting a market research may not be the same as carrying a research overseas. The Chinese tend to be overly-concerned about “face”. The Chinese have the mindset that they need to present their ought self in front of others all the time. Thus, it may not be easy getting the true response and feelings of the Chinese consumers as they tend to give the politically and safe response.
The Chinese have their own style of expression which may tend to frustrate a lot of foreign companies. Many foreign investors are unable to communicate effectively with the locals as they do not understand the different responses and expressions of the Chinese.
Thus, foreign companies really need to understand the China culture before entering the China market as the China market may create a lot of frustrations to the foreign companies. The best way to understand the China culture is to engage a local party to guide you as they are more familiar with the local touch. Furthermore, the possess the language skills and tactics to interact not only with the locals but they also understand the needs and wants of that of the foreign companies. Furthermore, they would be in a better position to negotiate in business meetings as not only would clients prefer to talk to someone familiar, they know how to read expressions of that of the Chinese clients.
Alina Hoon is a consultant of Starmass International. Starmass provides professional consulting services to assist foreign companies to enter the China market, from China market research, competitor study and China market analysis till export to China. Visit more business resources at: http://www.starmass.com