Getting business support in Brazil
Every business needs external partners, supporters or other forms of cooperation. No matter what size your business it is always important to find the right people to work with for an individual task, a temporary project or even for the long-term strategy. Finding the right partners or people to work in a company’s headquarter can be a challenge. Finding these people in a new city can be even more challenging. And what happens once you start looking for people in other countries to get your business growing there? No doubt it is even more complicated to get the right people into place once you cannot even go over there and sit down with them in person on a regular basis.
In the digital economy location is not the most important aspect of a business. But when traditional on the ground functions come to play every business needs to take locations and cultural specifications into consideration. Language and local habits are key elements to success for any company going abroad. For this reason, Internet startups and also non-IT companies count on local support to get their business done in South America (and other parts of the world).
Social media and customer support
Customer support has changed dramatically over the past 20 years. While in the past, clients were used to be attended during traditional working hours they are now expecting much more flexibility from the services they are using. Although phone support remains an important aspect of every business, the future (if not the present) of customer support is clearly online. Both phone and customer support require well-prepared partners and employees able to attend in the languages required by the customers. While phone support is still partly bound to traditional working hours clients can use online tools 24/7 to contact companies and send queries or complaints. Even if support services may not be present at any hour it is the sensation of being able to send a message at any moment that matters to customers. Depending on the location of the clients the tools that need to be offered can vary. In Brazil, social media support is of serious importance to create a pleasant customer experience. Mostly social networks like facebook, but also apps like WhatsApp or Telegram can be used to offer comfortable support to Brazilian customers.
Legal and tax support
Brazil is known for both complex legal and tax environments. Any company going abroad needs to make sure all of its activities are protected by local legislation. Over the past years also the digital economy was confronted with growing legal challenges. While in the early years of the Internet, national legislators were mostly ignoring or (even more likely) unaware of digital data flow and cross-border online business activities the scenario has changed. Today, more and more regulations are set up in several parts of the world also for online and Internet businesses, mostly regarding privacy and data transactions, consumer protection and also financial security. Besides that, Internet business activities in Brazil can be confronted (just as traditional businesses as well) with legal restrictions regarding cross-border services and billing. Even the European Union’s GDPR has certain effects for Internet business activities in Brazil. Finding legal support and responsible accounting services are of great importance to the international Internet companies doing business in Brazil.
Just as customer support also marketing has a strong cultural edge and is often developed in cooperation with partners in local markets. Although some local professionals and media outlets like to stress the importance of getting the flow for Brazilian culture and flavor to develop a successful marketing strategy one should not believe this was a solely Brazilian phenomenon. No doubt, developing marketing strategies for Brazil requires knowledge of the local culture. But so does developing marketing in Indonesia, Ghana or Switzerland. Culture is a key aspect of marketing in any part of the world.
A golden rule is not to expect people reacting or thinking the same all over the world. A Swedish mindset is not compatible with a Brazilian mindset which is not compatible with Northern India which is not compatible with Southern India and so on. Whoever wants to run successful marketing in a foreign market has to know and to consider its individual rules and customs.
And also in Brazil, marketing is a very competitive and diversified business. Having a large market to attend, there are marketing agencies of several sizes working with all formats and clients. From a simple online or PR campaign up to high-end commercials for international enterprises like this famous spot from 2017.
And of course, social media and the mobile Internet play an important role in Brazilian marketing. And so does the affection Brazilians have with sales promotions. They certainly love a good promoção.
Finding the right support to develop business strategies for startup or Internet businesses in Brazil is a task that requires accuracy and dedication. Understanding Brazilian customers not only in terms of verbal communication but also culturally is a crucial condition to be successful in the country. Internet startups and also non-digital companies need to clearly analyze the Brazilian market and its regional characteristics before launching their campaigns. And when it comes to legal and tax issues local support is indispensable.