What are the specific characteristics of the international marketing activities designed and implemented by small firms?
As defined Robert W. Rowden (Thunderbird International Business Review, March-April 2001), a small firm (with a maximum of 50 employees) is centralized and personalized through management of an owner-manager. This type of organization provides some advantage such as proximity between manager and employees because there is less hierarchy. Furthermore, internal information system is more simple than big companies, it allows an efficient sharing of ideas and to have an adaptability to the market changes. Yet, a small company doesn't have the multinational's human and financial resources to trade internationally. Also, it has a risk aversion. Indeed, a small company "reacts to the environment, rather than predicting or controlling it," which may make it "hesitant to actively seek out foreign customers or suppliers" (Baird, I., Lyles, M., & Orris, J. Journal of Small Business Management,1994). However, the small business has to consider internationalization to survive. In fact, currently domestic markets are becoming saturated. Because, foreign competitors are entering with their cheaper products. Moreover, production costs continue increasing with the cost of labor. To obtain the firm's sustainable growth requires identifying new markets being innovator. Small company can create a competitive advantage with its skills and adaptability. Thus, international marketing takes place when the small firm wants to sell its products and services toward customers in a foreign country. The international concept of marketing is the same worldwide, but the environment within which the marketing plan is implemented can be different. The choice of a marketing strategy will be influenced by several characteristics such as type of firm, resources, the foreign country. To remain competitive in the complex world of international...
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