Client – A National Government Agency
A national government client had made a public commitment that their nation was a great place to do business. Their reputation for this claim would be substantiated by attracting foreign inward investment (foreign headquartered businesses setting up and investing in operations in their country). Strong advertising campaigns had created a lot of visibility and exposure, but this was not translating into sufficient volumes of new investment. There was a gap in their sales and marketing process. The government’s trade advisors were stretched and it was not in their skill set to hunt for prospective investors by phone directly or reaching out in alternative ways to find a potential client. Apart from advertising, there was little sales and marketing support and at best 2 trade advisors to cover a whole country.
On the plus side, all the trade advisors worked out of embassies and had access to ambassador’s residences.
We used the European Business Awards, platform, data set and community. We knew that the EBA community was made up of fast growing European mid-sized businesses, 70% of which were interested in growing their international footprint.
Our research team worked with the trade advisors in each country to identify target industry sectors and specific companies that they would like to speak to. If the companies were relevant and met the European Business Awards entry criteria, they would be invited by the EBA to enter the competition and it would be explained that they had been nominated by our government client.
We followed up by writing to the prospect client, on behalf of the government trade advisor, to congratulate them on building a great business and wishing them well in the EBA competition and letting them know that if ever they wanted to set up in their country to give them a call.
We asked all entrants in the European Business Awards across Europe which countries they were interested in expanding to.
We then ran a series of exclusive events at embassies and ambassadors’ residences throughout Europe. We originated the content, ran the logistics from start to finish and most importantly, invited the CEOs of the most relevant companies to the events. Events ranged from 200 people attending cocktail receptions to 12 people participating in roundtable discussions. Over a 5 year period we introduced the government trade advisors to more than 3,500 companies.
This has resulted in 10’s of millions of Euros of foreign direct investment for our client, who as a result, met their commercial ambitions.
The Gaps We Plugged
- We developed a mechanism of taking the awareness generated by the advertising and created an outreach programme to engage potential investors.
- Our research team analysed datasets to identify potential investors and agreed target companies with the client.
- We then employed our content and sales teams to engage potential investors directly with phone calls, engaging written content, email campaigns and follow up engagement to place these prospects in front of our trade advisors.
- Our events team created exclusive events in ‘money can’t buy’ environments, which amplified the appeal of investing in that country.
Much of our work is centred on commercially sensitive projects and our clients are uncomfortable sharing their challenges and more importantly the fixes they have worked on with us. Because of this, we have anonymised all of the cases studies.