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  • Writer's pictureZach Janik

Selling to the USA

As a company overseas.

It is not hard. 

You can do it. 

Often though I find overseas companies are hesitant to aim for the United States because of cultural barriers, language barriers and sometimes feeling like there is such a mountain to climb, it’s not even worth trying. 

First lets cover why you would be considering selling to the USA. 

  • Population - 322.9 million 

  • Active online -  282.1 million 

  • Active on Social Media - 192 million

  • Actively shopping online - 209.6 million 

  • Internet penetration - 87.9%

  • Retail Ecommerce Sales (2016) - 322.17 billion 

Source - Statista

If you sell B2C or B2B the market is there for you to reach, but your feelings are valid about being hesitant, so lets overcome three of them right now. 

The biggest change to your outreach is going to be the messaging around who you would like to be successful by using your product. America is very focused on personal gain, which can be as simple as generating positive reinforcement for your champion or even creating messaging that leads the end user to believe they personally are going to beat their goals, make the most money and crush company records. 

Alternatively overseas I find, and this might not be everywhere, but overwhelmingly I hear messaging targeting the greater good of the company or improving the community.

Next - it is very important that you simplify and clarify your message. Founders specifically, become very obsessed with the product and tend to speak about EVERYTHING it can do, instead of focusing on one specific thing that you can fix. 

This can be very confusing to a buyer, and a great example is if you were to call a plumber and instead of telling you that “yes we can fix your problem” they get into a conversation about residential, commercial, industrial jobs, speed of access to parts, and certifications achieved. 

What's your first thought? - “That's cool, but can you fix my problem?” 

Although your product might be able to fix a handful of situations, it is important when selling across the ocean that clarity, and simplicity of the message is at the forefront. You might be the most advanced plumber in the world, but if you see that sinks are breaking more frequently than toilets, it would be beneficial to change your messaging to “best damn sink fixer in the world” 

MrBeast the Youtube personality is a good example of this, as he often changes his video thumbnails to test different situations to get the most views. 

One final piece of advice, and I promise there is more to consider, but who has that time - Americans need you to GET TO THE POINT. In fact one of the first things I teach people that I am working with is to use the first five seconds to hook someone. Taking email as an example, on mobile you can see 7 words  plus the subject line, do not make those words… 

“Hi XYZ, I wanted to reach out because” 

Instead try….”New VP mentioned your acquisition of Salesforce” 

If you need to include Hi Zach after your first line and then explain why you are reaching out, you can do that, but you have to hook them. 

This can extend to marketing as well, in fact using social media as an example I can point to ‘abbeywwwww’ who starts all her videos with “come take a sh*t with me” - which lead to partnerships with Febreeze and a number of other companies. That hook is so strong, you have to be curious as to what is going to happen next.

Selling to Americans is really just a series of shifts in mindset and creating some catchy messages, its not going to be this mountain you are imagining. 


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