First steps to doing business in the USA

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Susan begins this video cast by introducing her firm McDay, a strategic marketing agency based in Philadelphia, PA. This business video is an introduction to doing business in the USA inc60 Live Session.

Susan reassures participants by noting that the idea of expanding your business into the United States and setting out to build a revenue base there may seem daunting. Susan explains that she will outline some simple steps that will facilitate the process.

How to expand your business here in the United States

The first step is to focus on a particular area. Companies don’t need to worry about the size of the United States because the market is geographically specific for each sector. For example, pharma and biotech is in three locations; between Boston to North Carolina, San Diego and San Francisco, with Texas a rising force. Oil and gas meanwhile is more narrowly defined as the industry is centred on Houston, Texas.

The next step involves testing the market. Companies must test the market and see if it’s right for them. The best way is to talk to people in the industry. An efficient means of talking to a lot of people quickly is to attend an industry specific trade show and arrange a dozen detailed conversations along the margins or over coffee.

Susan tells us that Americans love to be asked for advice, though she suspects that this is a universal trait. According to Susan, almost anyone will sit down with you if you frame the conversation you desire in that manner.

Susan lists Enterprise Ireland and the Irish American Business Chamber & Network as great sources of advice. Irish American networks can quickly become a source of in depth assistance. Susan remarks that newcomers are surprised by how many people are willing to help.

When it comes to taking the plunge, Susan has the following advice. Once you are confident that your product is unique, with differentiators from your competitors, take the first year to get an office and bring over one or two people. For business development, a salesperson is expensive. Susan recommends finding someone who can set up appointments and build your office on the back of your first project. Caution is required when selecting such a person. Susan recommends taking care to find and hire a transparent person who will not jeopardise your reputation in the States.

A person scheduling appointments should be expected to deliver between 3-10 appointments per month. This person will save you the cost of a Business Development/Sales person who might come in at US$100 – 150,000 (minimum) annually.

An interview podcast will also be available shortly on our Inc60™ Business Podcast App from Apple and Google Play Stores.

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Susan Stipa
Susan has twenty years in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, financial services, and healthcare related businesses. Most recently as Commercial Director for Foster Wheeler Biokinetics, she returns to McDay (after a decade at sister company McLaughlin & Morgan in the 1990s), bringing full circle a life sciences career that began at Hoffmann La Roche, where she ran the bulk powders step of the largest Vitamin C plant in the world at that time. Susan’s B.S. chemical engineering background, coupled with right brain creativity and determined focus on client revenue generation, fuels many a client’s success.