The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued eight recommendations for companies entering the Mexican market.
As a preamble, the USDA stated that US exporters should consider contacting local distributors/importers as an important first step in their efforts to establish themselves in the Mexican market.
Indeed, a good distributor must promote sales and ensure that imported products are available at the points of sale.
For the Department of Agriculture, it is essential to maintain close contact with their respective representatives, especially regarding changes in import procedures and documentation.
- Research appropriate business contacts and thoroughly review Mexican import regulations to successfully capitalize on market opportunities and overcome market challenges.
- Consider appointing a broker or consider developing a business relationship with a distributor or importer. Perform background checks before entering into contractual agreements with prospective importers.
- Participate and/or attend Mexican trade shows, particularly US pavilions organized at selected fairs. A trade show can be used to contact local dealers/sales agents, buyers and entrepreneurs, and to become familiar with local competition. For businesses new to the market, be prepared to support in-store and media promotions to familiarize consumers with your products. Another option is trade missions organized at the state or regional level.
- If there are no trade shows of interest, plan a preliminary visit to talk with buyers, retailers, distributors and other stakeholders to prepare a more effective entry strategy.
- Educate consumers about products, especially new products on the market. Be prepared to work with other partners to highlight the qualities of your product, in addition to the price: safety standards, freshness, etc.
- Research strategies to adapt your product(s) to local preferences; prepare product(s) information/promotional materials in Spanish, and allocate a promotional budget for your product(s).
- Avoid planning your visits/meetings around Mexican holidays (ie, Holy Week, Christmas).
- Consider that more than 30 US agricultural trade associations and organizations implement USDA-funded marketing programs in Mexico.