UKTI Passport To Export Completion

We’ve completed our UKTI Passport to Export Programme

The UKTI Passport to Export programme is developed to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) with training, planning and support to grow their business overseas.

Through the programme we covered topics specific to international trade inlcuding business culture, branding, intellectual property and international web presence.

We even got a certificate at the end.

UKTI certificate

Lessons from the UKTI – Top 10 International Marketing Tips

The following is a top 10 list from the UKTI when marketing your SME internationally;

  1. Develop your network
  2. Do your research
  3. Develop and maintain a strategy – keep it live
  4. Understand the risks – commercial, political, country-specific
  5. Carefully select overseas partners
  6. Choose your country carefully
  7. Visit your overseas market
  8. Consider costs and pricing
  9. Evaluate your current portfolio
  10. 4 P’s of marketing – get good at them (plus patience, persistence and passion)

Lessons from the UKTI – How to Choose The Right International Market

The following are key considerations when looking at choosing an international market for your SME;

  • Suitability, potential and ease of entry of the market
  • Research – desk and field research should be carried out
  • Plot the ease of entry into market and market attractiveness against the demand and market size
  • Analyse website traffic for your terms
  • Capitalise on language capabilities
  • Mapping competitor activities in the UK and overseas
  • Use of social media / networking
  • PESTEL analysis

More from the UKTI >>

Lessons from the UKTI – Business Culture For Export

The following are key considerations when looking at business culture in international markets

Culture = collective experience of a society

  • Adapt the mindset of a globalist; can’t be an expert in every country so must research! – business practices, social, etiquette
  • Time considerations – In the Western world time=money, other cultures take things “as they come”
  • Be local and global
  • Be culturally fluent, not just linguistically fluent – use your common sense and emotional intelligence
  • Be aware of social proximity – for example, in the US you’d stand about 2.5 feet apart, China you would stand closer. Watch and mirror their behavior
  • When in Europe – dress conservatively and go to meetings suited and booted
  • EURO DISNEY as a bad example – to start their name translated as “money Disney.” They used plastic cutlery, all instructions were in English and they ignored advice to provide kennels in a country that frequently travels with its dogs. Not to mention that they didn’t offer wine with meals.
    After 2 years in operation they ran out of cash and had to borrow $175million to keep operating.


A couple of examples of different business cultures;

    Accept and give business cards with both hands, study the card – don’t put it away or write on it.
    Don’t eat or drink before the host
    Avoid personal contact – it’s highly inappropriate for a man to touch a woman in public
    Stand when others enter room, allow Chinese to leave meeting 1st
    Do not discuss business at meals
    White blue and black are associated with death
    Don’t assume can use someone’s 1st name
    Don’t eat beef
    Don’t refuse hospitality
    Remove shoes in homes, places of worship, shops and businesses
    Don’t accept/give anything with left hand
    Don’t turn down vodka if offered by host, don’t shout at people (seen as sign of weakness)
    Don’t perceive Russian hospitality as bribery
    Remove shoes in home
    Asmile in Russia is much more personal; as you become closer to people

For more guides on working within different business cultures, the UKTI has a number of guides for downloading here

Lessons from the UKTI – Overcoming Barriers to Entry

The following are key points to consider when looking at overcoming potential barriers to entry;

  • Documentation – make sure your documentation is right – you can get help from UKTI, HMRC, Chambers and Freight Forwarders
  • Check Costs – budget and understand additional costs involved with working internationally
  • Know which standards you need to comply with – British / European, CE marking, overseas taxation etc
  • Payment – what is the exchange risk (to reduce this risk you could look to arrange a fixed rate with your bank) Think about methods of payment, time to get paid, international collection, letters of credit etc
  • Language – language and translation support is key; learn some of the language and find location-based translation services
  • Culture – a little understanding can go a long way. How are business cards given and received? Hand shakes? Shoes off? Understand how people do business – who and how are decisions made? Committee Vs Individual?
  • Research the market – design, interest, print, imagery, brand names etc

Enjoy the colour of your beer – cheers!

Working with Pantone colours is a daily occurrence for us designers, however when a Swiss guy and a Brazilian got together they came up with Beertone – a beer color reference guide.

Featuring colours, beer information and labelling it almost feels like Beer Top Trumps!

Transparent computer that allows users to reach inside and touch digital content – unveiled at the TED conference in Los Angeles

The computer consists of a “see through” LED display and built-in cameras which allow the user to reach into the computer to interact with elements.

Working with Microsoft the South Korean inventor has developed software allowing the user to touch content within the computer. He expects the system will be available within a decade.

This reminds us of a pen and sculpting 3D system I had chance to try out; effectively sculpting 3D objects on screen whilst getting physical feedback through a pen connected to the computer.


How much for a coffee???

The Wall Street Journal puts the cost of a UK brew into perspective!

Formerly calculated using the price of a Big Mac, the index illustrates how far a dollar will go in various countries.


Original Article Location

ARD Studio to release Polaroid Camera

Socialmatic™ is a brand new instant camera to allow you to fill the gap between virtual and real world.Based on Android as main OS, Socialmatic™ represents a revolution in the social digital photography. Due for launch in 2014, here’s a suggestion of the form it may take…

Information and image from

Eye-catching new branding for Firefox OS from Wolff Olins

Mozilla have showcased their new branding created with Wolff Olins at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Firefox is a free OS (operating system) and the phone is designed to be used connected to the internet – rather than relying on a mobile operator.

The new slogan “Blaze your own path” accompanies this eye-catching branding for the new mobile operating system. Having used Firefox myself for years, I can’t wait to see how the phone develops, although I have my concerns about using a phone which relies so heavily on the internet.


Original Source

Marketing Trends for 2013

1. Second Screens

More people will use smartphones and tablets while watching TV and seeing films in the cinema.
This will provide great opportunities for engagement with an audience now less susceptible to advertisements.

2. Big Data

Targeted cross-channel mountains of information and data collected about us will let business create more personalised, relevant messages to their customers, when and where they expect it.

3. 3D Printing Brought Mainstream

Once a useful, novel industrial piece of kit, 3D printers are now available from shops. Expect to see more stories of this technology being used!

4. Flexible Screens

The flexible display is on its way.

5. Embedded Technology

The fridge with the control panel, your freezer connected to the internet. It’s here!

6. Crowd Funding

Small investments into personally-interesting projects for small returns on investment, pride in being involved in helping a project which might not otherwise be funded, and samples before everyone else. What’s not to like?