Please note this page is for information only – the UKTI ECR programme is now closed.
UKTI Export Communications Review: Help your business to grow internationally by improving your global communications.
(I have a specific page for West Midlands Export Communications Review.)
What is a UKTI Export Communications Review?
UK Trade & Investment‘s Export Communications Review (ECR) can help you to trade more successfully with international markets. It involves a comprehensive of international communications audit and is conducted by a UKTI-accredited Export Communications Consultant (ECC). Each ECC, of which I am one, has international experience and is currently managing a business in the communications field. We have all have been rigorously trained and have access to the latest resources and information in order to provide professional and independent guidance to exporters.
By overcoming the cultural and language barriers that come between your business and overseas trade and by improving communications with global clients, the ECR may increase the enquiries arising from the Internet, improve relations with export clients, increase traffic through sales channels, and improve overall business performance.
Over 5,000 companies nationwide have already benefitted from the ECR to support the development of their international business, with 80% stating that it has had a direct impact on their bottom line.
Your company can benefit from a series of reviews to support your international business development. During each review, the consultant will spend around two to three hours with you and your export team, discussing your current export strategy and international activities.
A UKTI ECR is particularly relevant when you are:
- Challenged by a particular market
- Embarking upon a trade show, mission, or other important overseas trips such as customer negotiation, distributor selection, or market research
- Launching a new product range or service
- Considering a new route to market
- Updating or translating international marketing materials
- Developing, updating, or translating international web pages
- Tackling a new market, especially a ‘difficult’ one.
What happens in a review?
- Face-to-face or Skype meeting with senior management and/or export staff
- Discussion about existing communications in export markets using best practise checklists
- Identification of strengths and weaknesses
- Discussion of suppliers sources and likely costs
- Development of an agreed action plan
- Provision of a detailed and confidential written report with ‘how-to-guides’ containing advice on implementing recommendations.
What might be reviewed?
- Global web strategy
- International social networking
- Marketing, operational, packaging, and training materials
- Handling of international sales and technical enquiries
- Overseas meetings and presentations
- Preparation for international visits such as trade missions and exhibitions
- Communications with agents, distributors, and partners overseas.
The UKTI Export Communications Review for websites
Many companies now rely upon their web presence to promote and sell their products and services. The UKTI ECR can review the effectiveness of your web presence to communicate with potential international costumers and to generate export business.
A specific web review offers a comprehensive analysis of your web strategy, covering elements such as:
- Web strategy development
- Website internationalisation technical challenges
- Site design, structure, and navigation for overseas visitors
- International content
- Translation and localisation
- Website promotion including multilingual search engine optimisation (SEO)
- Development of a broader global online presence
- Monitoring traffic and the site performance
- Managing the impact of a successful site.
What are the benefits of a review?
Professional approach and strategic thinking
“We were blown away with the meeting and very grateful for the powerful insight you gave us on our website.”
McBrides Accountants, Kent
Action plan for improving international communications
“Excellent report which has given us a roadmap of areas to address with clear signposts of how to address these issues.”
Bia Associates, Leicester
Confidence to trade with new and challenging markets
“The review has had a wide impact as we have used the same approaches for other overseas markets. It has certainly increased my confidence in dealing with worldwide markets.”
Supreme Music, Brighton
Increased number of new and relevant enquiries
“I thoroughly enjoyed the fact-packed review session. The knowledge gained will be put to great use in our new website and make it really work for us!”
Bigbury Mint, Devon
Improved visibility on foreign web searches
“I just didn’t realise we were invisible on the web. What you’re saying is absolutely fundamental to doing business internationally.”
ADR Group, Bristol
Increased competitiveness by localising your messages
“The review gave detailed recommendations covering languages, localisation, colour and content of both the website and the Duvalay™ packaging. We set up a virtual telephone number in Dusseldorf which led to a 100% increase in enquiries from Germany.”
Raskelf, West Yorkshire
A fresh pair of eyes
“We were keen to see how we could make the most of our website, and used UKTI’s tailor-made review service as an MOT. Taking the time to sit down with someone and use them as a sounding board to talk through our ideas and goals was really useful.”
Merlin Glass, Cornwall
The Export Communications Consultant will work with you to design a programme which supports your export goals and may involve a number of separate or combined visits, depending upon the complexity of issues, such as number of countries, languages, products, routes to market, people and export activities.
Cost of the UKTI ECR
The UKTI Export Communications Review is designed as a programme of assistance for companies. The cost therefore depends upon the scope of the agreed programme for each business. The cost of a single review would be £500 plus VAT. A series of three reviews would cost £1,500 plus VAT. Exporting companies that have been trading for at least two years and employ fewer than 250 staff can receive a subsidy from UKTI of £250 towards the cost of each of their first three reviews.
Read a UKTI publication on Improving your business communications (PDF, 3.64MB, 36 pages)