Common Mistakes US companies make in Launching their Cyber Security Company in Europe by Dianne Canham

“Watch any rerun of the Eurovision Song Contest to appreciate the diversity of Europe.  That’s why the task of launching a cyber security company into Europe is no easy exercise.  The opportunities for cyber security companies are vast: particularly as the deadline for the EU General Data Protection Regulations looms closer; yet for every company that succeeds there are many that fail.   Ahead of our free webinar on this topic from cybersecurity channel and PR experts on Thursday 24th August, here’s where a lot of companies go wrong:

  • Viewing Europe as a single market

Europe is a hugely diverse area of 743 million people and a linguistic, economic, cultural and political region of massive contrasts.  The first question you should ask yourself is where you want to focus your effort to get the best ROI.   Careful research into the market is vital to understand any technical or regulatory challenges, as well as the market opportunity and challenges associated with the different regions.   It’s usually best to start in one or two markets and establish a presence there rather than spreading your resources too widely.

  • Assuming you can do it remotely

Whether you’re talking about recruiting the best channel partner or building a thought leadership position for your spokespeople, it isn’t possible to do this from the US.  You will need local people on the ground who have the relationships and local knowledge to make things happen.  Becoming a successful brand in Europe means you must commit resource into the region.  Attempting to do this by a team based in the US in a different time zone, without the local knowledge or local language capability is frankly ludicrous.

  • Wrong timing

For many organisations knowing when to invest in Europe can be extremely difficult.  Starting to build a profile and generating sales opportunities amongst European CISOs and security professionals without having a channel or local sales resource to handle the sales opportunities will be counterproductive.  Conversely, leaving it too late or assuming that your channel partners will build your brand for you is an equally naïve approach.  

  • Choosing the right people and support to Launch your European operation

Getting the right local team in place is critical and ensuring that team has the local support needed to make an impact in the intensely competitive European market will usually be the difference between success and failure.  Setting up a solitary sales person and seeing if they can sink or swim to test the market will usually result in failure, so putting together a launch plan that includes the right level of investment in terms of brand building and local technical support is absolutely vital to success.   

So, we’ve told you how not to do it.  If you want to find out a better approach to launching your cyber security company in Europe, then join our webinar on August 24th at 9.00 PST/ noon ET by registering here.

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