Case Study: International market entry analysis for top education content provider

May 23, 2017

Emerging Strategy works with a top education company serving more than 50 million students in more than 150 countries. Our client sees the On-Request market intelligence partnership as critical in informing its international strategy with fact-based, data-oriented insight on market opportunities. 

Client Situation:

Our client has historically taken an opportunistic approach towards non-U.S. markets. With the company’s Board and its CEO seeking international expansion, the International Markets team has elected to obtain market intelligence from its On-Request partnership with Emerging Strategy to vet and prioritize markets to focus its investments into areas of best fit and highest potential.

Although the company often gained an initial foothold in emerging markets by responding to strong demand for high quality content, it has become a top priority to continue growing its business in key non-U.S. markets. To confidently meet the expectations of its board and CEO, the International Markets team needed market intelligence to play a central role in long-term strategic decision-making, such as prioritizing the markets that the company chooses to play in, and the investments that it makes.

The Vice President for International Markets quickly realized that given his team’s limited internal capacity for conducting the international market intelligence required to drive revenue growth, a long-term engagement with an external partner such as Emerging Strategy could systematically and objectively analyze markets, and help achieve its global growth imperative.

Solution:

Emerging Strategy’s On-Request partnership is an ideal solution for the team because the continuous access to timely and well-structured top-down market intelligence enables it to identify promising markets, make flexible pivots in research scope on the fly, and get quality insight into any number of emerging markets, before committing more significant internal and external resources in vetting those markets and developing a comprehensive go-to-market strategy.

We initiated the partnership by jointly developing a list of research projects that would run for the first several months, focused on examining various market segments in countries of interest, with each project running a few weeks in length. The client’s management actively participates and provides feedback and direction. Emerging Strategy works directly with the Vice President for International Markets, who in turn shares our intelligence and his recommendations with his CEO, the global sales organization, and company personnel in global markets.

Results:

Market intelligence through our On-Request partnership is helping the team to create a long-term strategy for global expansion, and eventually it will be used to craft a “go-to-market” strategy for each market segment within each country, to meet the company’s financial objectives for its non-U.S. business.

Examples of projects:

  • Market landscape of specific market segments, filling gaps in existing intelligence
  • Estimation of the addressable market size of relevant markets segments
  • Competitor profiles and market share, through a rigorous modeling approach leveraging publicly available data
  • Analysis of the regulatory environment for specific product lines, including recent regulatory changes

This systematic process represents a shift in culture for the client’s International Markets team, but the team’s Vice President is happy about what the On-Request partnership has produced. During a recent conversation he told us, “Look, I have no difficulty giving hard news to consulting firms.  But you guys: the work you do, the scope of the work, timeliness, and the quality of delivery – I can’t say enough. If I had a colleague who asked for a firm, I would recommend you.”  



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