Choose the best commercial agent for your company
When trying to break into a new market, the most common decision might be using an intermediary, more specifically, a commercial agent or a distributor.
To decide if we should work with an agent or a distributor, we should forecast how many customers we will have and determine the value of the orders in the new market. In the case of a few customers but high-value orders, it is better to work with a commercial agent.
Once assessed the pros and cons of working with a commercial agent, it is time to look for and get in touch with some profiles. The following methods are the most used when recruiting an international partner:
Local business groups and other sectorial organizations’ webpages.
Public bodies of the new market and government agencies from our country located at the target market. In Spain: https://www.camara.es/
B2B specialized directories with information of agents profiles. Ex. Kompass.
Professional Social Networks, such as LinkedIn.
Internet search of agents’ webpages.
2. Exhibiting or visiting a trade fair or international exhibition
To identify with who and how our competitors work, as well as, to have the opportunity to meet personally the potential commercial agents. Otherwise, we can also look for the information at the directory of the exhibition official webpage.
3. Advertising: to publish an ad on sectorial channels.
4. To hire some recruitment agency services on site.
5. Recommendation from our partners and collaborators.
Once the profiles have been identified and pre-select, we should search for the professional background, the products and brands they are working with, their customer profile, and last but not least, seeking referrals. But, how can we manage to assure a rewarding relationship with the selected commercial agent? These are some key facts to succeed:
1. Reciprocal reporting. Besides selling our products, we should ask a monthly report to the commercial agent, and he also has to provide useful information about customers, competitors, and the market. In return, we have to provide the necessary information from our company and products.
2. To share the business culture and values. The commercial agent has to understand not just the product characteristics, but also the culture and values of the company so that these are transferred to the final customer.
3. Economical and non-economic support. In addition to the commissions and other economic incentives, the agent has to receive non-salary incentives, such as recognition and training.
4. Carry out our responsibilities. If we want good economic performance, we also have to meet our liabilities: on-time deliveries, incident managing, supplying sample books, etc.
If we follow this recommendation, as well as, we work hard on the search and recruitment process, we will probably have a successful business relationship with the commercial agent, and hence, a successful market entry.
In our case, from FD Country Managers we offer the commercial agent service for international companies to sell their product in the Spanish market. Thanks to more than 100 years of experience as Country Managers we have developed expertise in these sectors:
Textile, nonwovens & composites.
Inspection, Quality Control and NDT (Non Destructive Testing).
Industrial equipment, components and machinery.
Raw materials for composites.
Extrusion, lacquering and anodizing of aluminum.
Packaging and packing.
Sustainability and the environment.
Contact us for more information.