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Big Picture Report: May 2020


Bernadette Wiltz, SUSTA

Virtual Opportunities Emerge from COVID Situation

The COVID19 situation is forcing us all to adapt and to be a little more creative, with the goal of coming out of this a bit more prepared.Like the saying goes, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

Amid the uncertainty, two things we know for sure: first, like here at home, groceries and other retail outlets are among the essential businesses which remain open in key export markets around the world. Second, screen time is surging and – at least for now – is the new normal among businesses and consumers. Tapping into those two trends, SUSTA has launched a series of virtual events designed to help you prepare and connect.

First is our ongoing virtual consultations with SUSTA’s team of in-country consultants.These sessions are designed to help you prepare for when things start to get back to normal.These on-line sessions link you directly, one-on-one with market experts in your target countries.It’s an opportunity to learn and ask questions about market trends, labelling requirements, what to consider when setting pricing for that particular market and to discuss your product’s potential.

So far, the feedback from companies has been great.One new-to-export company told us, “we feel more confident navigating this process …” as a result of their virtual consultation “because the focus was exclusively on our product and we have help from a resource who knows how to merge the resources and programs available from SUSTA with their experience to guide us through the market entry process.”

We’ve also been offering a series of weekly, targeted webinars on topics ranging from briefings on markets you are considering, to tips and insights on how to digitally engage your brand through social media to support your existing export sales.

We’re also launching a pilot virtual trade mission offering you the chance to meet with select Canadian buyers without leaving your desk!Our in-country team in Canada will conduct a custom market assessment for your product line, to be followed up by introductions and scheduling on-line one-on-one meetings with qualified buyers.Your participation in this virtual trade mission even includes reimbursements for sample shipments.

Meeting your customers where they are is a key tenet of marketing, and right now, you’ll likely find them in front of their computer screen.Because you can’t travel right now, let SUSTA bring the world to you!

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