Dialling in growth

What’s your projected growth rate this year? Perhaps you are a start-up company in a fast growth phase, or are you more likely to be predicting a period of stability, holding your own in a complex trading environment.

Whatever your individual growth rate forecast, the chances are that it has been the subject of some debate with its implementation backed up by targets and action plans. And it’s quite possible that those plans will combine steady state projections alongside some more ambitious moves to expand into new markets or with new products.

On a more global scale, your growth plans combined with those of companies across the UK add up to a targeted national figure which is currently predicted to be around the 1.5% mark. Contrast this with China which has recently announced an annualised second quarter growth figure of 6.7%, easing down 0.1% on the previous quarter.

Whilst it has to be admitted that there is a potential US/China trade war in the offing which may impact the second half of this year, nevertheless growth figures of this magnitude marks China out as an economy which is open for business. And it’s not the only one looking for above 5% growth; with an OECD report in May 2018 predicting a 2018 growth rate of 7.4% in India, 5.3% in Indonesia and 5.1% in Turkey.

Little wonder then that one of the pathways to growth advocated by the government is through international trade. Economies which are growing need a rising supply of goods and services in order to fuel demand. The more that demand can be met by UK companies, the greater the boost to our own economy. In pursuit of this the Department for International Trade provides guidance and support for those looking to export. This covers areas such as market research, customer insight, business planning and compliance.

One advice point from the Department’s website suggests that once you have overseas customers you should nurture the relationship with regular face-to-face meetings. Whether this is possible or even practicable will depend on the size and nature of your business. Even if face-to-face meetings are possible, maintaining open lines of communication will certainly help with the customer relationship.

That’s where companies could benefit from setting up local overseas telephone numbers, with calls being seamlessly redirected to their main base. Not only does this help to open up communication channels, but advertising local numbers you are demonstrating your willingness to operate in that country. For example, a China 401 telephone number enables you to reach potential buyers across China. And because it’s a freephone number, you are increasing your chances of opening and maintaining a dialogue with new and existing customers.

This is just one example of the way in which businesses are able to boost their growth plans through a careful choice of international telephone numbers. With national and regional international numbers on hand to back up any marketing plans, businesses looking towards exporting as a means of growth are well on the way to opening and maintaining open lines of communication. What’s your projected growth rate this year? If you add in the potential for overseas trade, where might that take you?

Written by Alison