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Keys to Taking Products Abroad with Zach Person of Borderless Business Solutions

Zach Person

When taking products abroad or when bringing overseas products here, certain principles apply. Zach Person explains experienced foreigners’ misconceptions about the US … even if they think they know they know the US well. Zach highlights the importance of using qualified reps and distributors, understanding regional differences in all countries, localizing product content and translating it, how many years to commit, the process for smaller companies, the best type of personality to help guarantee overseas success, what methods have not worked, packaging and image issues in Europe and the Middle East, and some great resources to access.


Some products that Zach has launched.

Marketing in Europe.

Misconceptions foreign executives have about American markets.

Localizing regional markets in the USA.

Knowing the regional differences in countries before marketing a product.

Creating teams in the USA vs Internationally.

Smaller Companies vs Fortune 500 Companies.

Zach Person bio:

Zach spent his professional career unlocking the revenue potential of global teams. His process involves integrating systems, software, and people driven by clarity of vision and relentless implementation. Zach founded Borderless Business Solutions with the mission of helping regional and global businesses grow and expand. A solid decision-making model is at the core of the mix, combined with a knack for integrating software, systems, and the people who power real growth in today’s diverse, modern companies. The results have been turning stagnation into acceleration and change into opportunity. Zach launched products in 30+ countries, built companies from conception to commercialization, reorganized entire international sales & marketing departments, and became a trusted advisor to many executive teams. His career spans the private and public sectors including consulting and entrepreneurship. He has held a number of leadership roles, ranging from Director of Global Business Operations to Director of International Sales to Senior Program Manager. The holistic view, unique perspective, and sense of humor I bring to each engagement make the process enjoyable and effective. Zach lives in Chicago, Illinois, and enjoys giving back to the community by mentoring young professionals and donating time to startup companies and small businesses.

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Full Transcript

Hello everyone. A sign in a supermarket in Japan had words both in Japanese and Korean. And of course, those words were accurate, and they meant to say that children and seniors should not sample the products in the supermarket. Instead, they wrote in English, “Please do not eat children and the elderly.” Very good advice, especially if you’re shopping. 

Today’s guest is Zach Person. Zach is the founder and chief project manager of Borderless Business Solutions. He has been elected the President of the International Trade Association of Greater Chicago and has launched products in the US and a variety of global markets. Zach has built companies from conception to commercialization and has revitalized the entire sales and marketing departments. He does this via a strong emotional quotient and a passion for developing high-performance teams, and the integration of systems, software, and people, all driven by clarity of vision and relentless implementation. 

This background allows Zach to work shoulder-to-shoulder with everyone from admin staff to process engineers to presidents and CEOs. His career spans the private and public sectors, including consulting and entrepreneurship. He has held numerous leadership roles, ranging from development, Director of Global Business Operations to Director of International Sales to General Manager of North America. He currently lives in Chicago and enjoys giving back to the community by mentoring young professionals and donating time to startups and small businesses. 

Welcome, Zach, delighted you could join us today.

Thank you.

So, let’s start by your giving us some examples of some products that you’ve launched in the US and others that you’ve taken to other countries.

Sure, the most recent long-term project was an Australian company that made a wild cleaning product called Tig Brush and it’s made to function in the metal fabrication space. It’s a fantastic product and they had great success at the beginning selling it in the States and then so much so that it made sense to set up a US office for about two years. I helped them get over the hump. It’s really, it’s a US subsidiary jump where you launch and then it takes a long time to localize your marketing strategy, localize your content, localize your people and hire the right people and then find a way to effectively manage those people in a way where they understand your product and then are able to sell it into the US market. 

And so, when we started it was during COVID and that was a huge shock to the company. So, everything went remote. And things were really rough for quite a while, but we managed to turn everything around. We hired a bunch of new people. And they went from almost shutting the doors to maxing out manufacturing. They couldn’t make enough products to sell. And where the US market is now their biggest market and still growing. It was awesome, it was super difficult, but that’s how it is. You know, it’s a start-up. It’s very bumpy. It’s very uncomfortable. But you get over it and you get through it and once people see and taste success and get it right, then people know what that is, and then they just keep on doing it, which is fun.

Are you allowed to say the name of the company?

Well, Tig Brush. Yeah, absolutely.

I’m sorry. And how do you spell it, please?

Tig Brush is the name of the brand TIG BRUSH.

Tig Brush. Yeah.

And I was their General Manager in North America for about two years or so and so I essentially came in to get everything set up.

Yeah, you did say the name of the company in the very beginning, but I couldn’t understand it, so I’m glad you spelled it out. Thank you. A what about products that you’ve taken to other countries? This was an Australian product brought here, but what about others in the reverse direction?

Probably early in my career. So, I started my international career on the corporate side with a company called Bisco dental products. And so, it’s a medical device, a Class 2 medical device. And so, it is adhesive composites, and my job at the time was to manage their European subsidiaries from the UK to Kazakhstan. 

So, there were existing products, the Albon 2 product which has to do with dental adhesion and adhesives and they launched a bunch of new products across the world. And so, I was responsible for the European market. Not only did I deal with everything as far as all the logistics of taking the orders, processing them, and shipping them, but I also worked with all the distributors on their marketing strategies, content, and all that kind of stuff, and those trade shows and everything else that goes along with selling a product into a foreign space.

And it’s Bisco. Is that correct?


What kind of strategies did you use? Because certainly marketing to the UK is very different from marketing to Kazakhstan. So, what kind of issues did you encounter? What kind of differences did you find, and what similarities did you find?

In Europe, it all comes down to partners and in my experience, whether you’re selling into a foreign market anywhere in the world or you’re helping somebody sell their product here in the United States, you have to have local support and people who understand their market extremely well and that involved becoming very closely connected to the distributor reps and their marketing departments, the leadership in the company and taking a lot of time to train, to work with them on various kinds of campaigns, email campaigns and trade show support, that kind of thing… whatever they needed to do to understand the product the best so they could then also translate the product and the value proposition correctly and then sell it into the market. 

And so, I kind of checked to make sure that everything was working well and when we came across problems, just those connections allowed me to just call them up. I also sent a couple of emails and we just fixed things as we went, and it worked out really well.

Did you do focus groups or the kinds of market research one would do in this country as you launched abroad?

At that point in time, there was an existing product that was fairly well established, the company was very well established, the products were new, and the distributors. And our business partners in the region and the countries knew the product can market very well. So, they also knew their customers very well. 

So, they helped us, we had our base marketing collateral, which went through the value features and benefits. And then they took the time to figure out how to translate that in a way that would resonate with their customers. And so that was kind of a dance in that regard, but really it gave them what they needed to create the message that they needed within reason, it had to be correct, and that was part of what my job was to make sure that it was still getting the point across correctly and not incorrectly. It took a little time, but it was very effective.

And when you say translate, do you mean actually translating from one language to another? Or do you mean cultural adaptation, or both?

It’s always both. Yeah, because I mean translating one thing, but it’s also even when we’re trying to limit our use of slang and euphemisms and things of that nature and in English, so that when you then give it to a foreign market that it won’t get mistranslated. 

So that you keep it as simple as possible, but sometimes those euphemisms come out so naturally, or they’re just so ingrained in the base language that you have to work with them, so a lot of times they’ll look at the marketing piece and they’ll come back, say, well, what does this mean? What you are trying to say is always an education, because, as I thought, that was clear, but… Nope, it’s not. 

And we make those assumptions all the time, and so then you have to explain what you feel are the silliest things, but to them, it’s incredibly important because they just don’t see things from our perspective. And that’s kind of the fun you get. The funniest questions and you just clarify that kind of thing, and they get it right and they can go out and sell the product and it works well.

Good. Yeah, that’s very true. 

Going back to the beginning, basically, what are some major misconceptions that foreign executives have about the American market when they want to launch companies here, and perhaps in reverse, misconceptions that Americans have when launching products abroad?

That they have the best product on the planet and all they have to do is copy and paste and hit the GO button and everybody’s going to throw money at them. The bigger companies actually have a bigger issue with it because with bigger companies come bigger egos typically and they’re just used to it; you know, they’re a big strong European company, or wherever they are in the world, or a Southeast Asian company they’re used to just being the big, big animal in the room. 

Americans don’t care, even if they know the brand a little bit. The Americans, especially in the last couple of years, have become much more standoffish to foreign brands and to overcome that you have to really double down on the commitment to the market, the commitment to the localization of the messaging localization.

I apologize. Could you go back for a moment? Americans are standoffish about what?

About foreign brands, brands, foreign brands, yeah, for a number of different reasons because America unfortunately is how we want to look at it, it’s just kind of the way things are a little bit, especially when you get into certain markets, and you have to spend a lot of time with the Australian company. 

That was one of the biggest breakthroughs when we got a really good US localized team, really good US localized market materials strategies, and outreach campaigns and everything started to feel exactly the way that the US customers and our US distributing partners needed to have the content. And the product and the company had been there for about three years at that point in time. So, they’re like, OK, you’re sticking around? So, we’ll take you seriously now. 

So, there are definitely people waiting and seeing if you’re going to be able to stick it out. And so, it’s a combination of a lot of things but once you get past that hump and people understand and can see that you are genuinely committing to the market on many different levels, then people open up and then it doesn’t matter quite so much where your product comes from because after about three years and doing things correctly for about three years, OK, now you’re local, just like everything else. And now we can do more business more quickly and it just kind of goes up from there.

Very interesting. Were there any misconceptions? For example, foreign companies come here, and they’re surprised that we are really not just one country; it’s 51 states and territories (with DC). Sometimes there are local regulations and sometimes there are local issues of what you can and cannot do, as well as the regional issues, certain holidays and about hiring practices and legal practices and accounting, and all of that. Do you find that this has become an issue or are more people now aware of these differences with these challenges in the United States?

They think they do. One of my clients, I’ve had a number of clients, so I speak German. I lived in Germany for a couple of years, so I’ve worked there, went to school there and so I’ve been pedaling back and forth for a couple of decades now. 

So, I have had a number of clients over the years. I have a current German client now and typically you see this with the Scandinavians too and just a lot of these companies where they, they or people where they’ve spent the time to really understand English, they travel the United States, they’ve been to LA. They love Chicago. They’ve been all over, and they’re really excited about the States just because it’s something new and different and interesting and they’re understanding a lot of things. It’s really quite extensive but as extensive as they think it is, it’s still very superficial. 

Especially once you get down South as a northerner, as a local US northerner going down South, you’re treated like a foreigner. I treat the South like its own country coming from Chicago, you know, and that’s just what you have to do. You have to hire locals. You have got to figure out the local customs and make sure not to step on certain toes that are only down in the South and that kind of stuff, and the West Coast is the same way. Work ethics. The East Coast is going New York style. You know they’ll run you right over that kind of thing and it’s kind of fun if you are up for that kind of thing. 

But you just have to understand how those cultures work and you and to be successful rather for any company in the United States to be successful in the United States market, you have to hyper localize or regionalize your market approach. And that’s where you see the most effective way forward and when foreign companies figure that out, they could think things tend to work a little bit better. They try to eat the whole elephant all at once but never do. Works out very well then, they have to turn around and pivot a little bit. 

OK, we’re going to focus on the Midwest. And really get that going. And then once you figure that out, OK. Now we’re going to the South. We’ll start with Texas. You know that kind of thing and just piece by piece. Everywhere else? Well, for most of the places in the world outside of China, countries are small. They’re just going to go into a country. It’s only going to be so big, but this place is massive. Just so big. And everybody’s here. 

All companies here are trying to compete in this market, especially right now because the global economy is in very much a recession internationally. But the United States is still doing OK. Relatively, I mean, yeah, it’s a little bit sluggish right now, but relatively speaking, this place is still humming along and if you’ve got money to Invest, you’re coming here. And everybody’s coming here. 

So, you have to not only know your product and localize your product, but you have got to compete with everybody else’s here too. So, you got to be extra good and so it takes a while for people to get over that hump.

Can you give us some examples of how companies have localized for US regional markets?

For the South, OK. If you’re going to regionalize for the South, it’s really important that you have some kind of a Southern ambassador or some kind of distributor, somebody who can help. Put together campaigns that use little more of the Southern drawl, the Southern twang, the Southern feel. And there’s a different way of using the English language and they are very sensitive to stuff like that. And most people are used to getting generalized English marketing communications, but when you localize it to where it has that southern twang to it. It’s way more effective but it takes a local to be able to do that kind of thing.

And the same thing for other places in the country. If you’re selling into Germany, if you’re selling into East Germany, it’s a little bit of a different language in the East, West, North and South. And if you can, tweak the German and localize it to that particular region. It’s so much more effective, but you have to have local help to do that.

Are you speaking about spoken television commercials? Because print ads wouldn’t show any differences, for example.

But they do. And emails. Ohh yeah, because using some slang using contractions, using apostrophes, and using just different ways of just living. And they’re very subtle and really good copywriters know this kind of thing and know their market, and they can tweak things in such a way to kind of bend to that particular manner.

Very interesting. Does the same apply to industrial products or just to consumer products?

You’re dealing with humans, and humans want to hear things the way they want to hear things.


People speak in a certain way. So, when you’re talking well, for example with engineers, there’s a very specific way that you talk with engineers and present information, features, and benefits to engineers. And it’s totally different than if you’re dealing with more mainstream products that are less technical than you can have a different approach, but you just have to know who you’re talking to to adjust your language to theirs. 

You mentioned Germany. Germany, I know, has a lot of regionalisms in the way the language is spoken and the outlooks of people and so forth, the expectations. When you’ve taken products into other countries, how have you tweaked it accordingly because, some countries, as you say, you know they’re small and one assumes that, well, Belgium is a good example, but that’s obviously three markets– Dutch-speaking, French-speaking, and Brussels. But another country like Italy for example, which is a large country and it has regions: Are the differences that dramatic in Italy, for example, or if you take something to the Middle East?

Yeah, it depends on how you have a distributor partner. If you have staff who come from certain regions. And you’re able to hyper… say if you want to do a campaign in southern Italy or Sicily, you’ll use a slightly different Italian than you would up north for example, just like you’re talking about.

But you’ll have to have either local people or local distributors in those regions that understand those nuances or you work with. Your translation companies or marketing companies that specialize in that kind of stuff locally to help you split that hair. A little bit. 

But it also really depends on the product, because if it’s a very technical product because I’ve done a lot with medical devices, I’ve done a lot with metal fabrication and manufacturing supportive industrial products. And a lot of the time they’re just looking for the nitty gritty, the features and benefits: What can it do for me and that kind of thing.

So, you really have to know whom you’re talking to and what the market is, so it’ll adapt. It’ll change. So of course, the omnipresent answer is that it depends.

Yes, totally. Have you been involved in situations, especially with consumer products where you have to change the packaging or the color or the pricing or the size, or something like that to meet the local expectations?

I haven’t personally, but the packaging is well, OK, especially when you’re getting into Europe, they’re really finicky about the packaging. In the United States, we like to put packaging around everything. Most of it’s a box. We like to have a lot of things to throw away. We get take off, take a piece like this big out. And you, you’re using your pen, but the box is 10 miles wide and it all goes in the garbage. But for Europe, you can’t do that. And so many companies, and I know of many companies where they’ve had to adjust their packaging for the US market and to make it much eco-friendlier and greener.

Eco-friendly and green for the US market or European?

Market typically.

European market, yes.

And you see that stuff here? We’re starting to see that kind of make its way over here a little bit. People are more and more conscious of that and are demanding more, less packaging-friendly products for sure. But in Europe, it’s much, much more extreme. You know in your own way you have to adapt.

And have you done marketing or product introductions in the Middle East or in Asia for example, where again the colors, the images, the wording perhaps all have to be adjusted?

Right. In the Middle East. Work with the company that sold it. Is called new medicine and they are a scar treatment and management product for surgery that is primarily plastic surgery that kind of thing and so the owner of the company was actually from the Middle East and so he understood a lot of these kinds of things. And so therefore we had a really good inside understanding of that market. 

So, a lot of our well, I mean the biggest thing is for example when for the Middle Eastern marketing material going into Saudi Arabia, for example, it would be very sensitive to wording and images especially of women, and that all had to be shifted and changed for that specific market. And we had two different kinds of marketing collateral for the rest of the world, and then the Middle East.

Very interesting. I can relate to something from the translation field which shows it is special. It was an interior design firm based in Rhode Island, and they were doing a project both in Latin America and in the Middle East, and a lot of it was a beautiful portfolio of just their projects. They were designing hotel interiors like the reception areas, the atriums, and so forth. 

And they had some wording in English about, “We create spaces that evoke a sense of peace and serenity.” Something like that. And when this company advertised for the Middle East, we had to change the wording because in Arabic, for strict Muslims, only God can create; people can’t create. 

So, we had to change the wording from “we create” to “we design” spaces or something like that. I assume you encountered similar situations. 

Separate question. Since you’re now president of the Chicago International Trade Association, what advantages do you promote in the Chicago region?

It’s a centrally located place, especially when it comes to logistics and warehousing, it’s very convenient, especially because you’ve got O’Hare [Airport], you’ve got really good rail and you even have access to river transportation. 

So, you can set up your central warehouse here and ship all over the country, and you can also do a lot of support since it’s a central time zone. You can talk to East Coast, West Coast, and everywhere. And it’s just easier to manage that kind of thing. 

It’s a big city. You’ve got really good access to talent, which is wonderful, by the way, because when I was working with TIG Brush, I was hiring people to build out that team. It was really nice to have access to so many great applicants, and so many great professionals to come in and talk to and that’s just the kind of luxury of living in a multicultural, multilingual metropolis like the ChicagoLand area.  

So, you just have more options when it comes to human resources and it’s really, it’s the people that run companies. You have to have the right people. And then you have to give them the tools to be successful. And when you get all that together, the magic happens and it’s a beautiful thing when it does.

Yeah, very true. 

One of your specialties is that you develop high-performance teams, and I was wondering what techniques you might use in the US and how those might differ when you work internationally.

You’re dealing with human beings and you’re managing human beings. You have to approach the situation in a way where it is an opportunity for that individual to grow, to become a bigger and better professional and human being. 

And it’s also important that as management in the company, people can see that. Is really serious about helping their team grow and succeed and also giving them the tools to succeed? And when you do that, that totally changes the dynamic of the relationship. And then one of the key things that I hire for, I mean anywhere, especially when you’re dealing with international companies where there’s a lot of ambiguity, where there are a lot of things to learn that you may not understand right away is the ability and willingness to learn and to be curious because that will help you get through just about anything … and because product knowledge you can train on within reason.

And especially when you’re dealing with multicultural, multilingual staff. Unfortunately in the United States, Americans don’t necessarily have the exposure to that kind of stuff, really, you know, so most people are speaking English and don’t get exposed to a lot of these different cultures and languages on a regular basis. And that’s not necessarily an issue. The key point is that they have to be open to learning about it, open to learning the other side of the coin, and learn what they need to learn to be successful and not resist it. So that’s a key part of success really.

And do you find that certain people perhaps are more resistant than others or is it a totally individual basis?

All individual bases. It really depends. I’ve interviewed people who have had incredible technical experience. I mean, they knew the market six ways from sideways and they were just rock stars in their own little space. But they couldn’t be bothered to understand or want to know anything about other cultures. And there’s no way I would hire them because they just wouldn’t be successful in that environment. It wouldn’t be good for them. It wouldn’t be good for us because they wouldn’t be able to succeed. It just wouldn’t work. 

And I’ve erred on the side of people that are open to this kind of thing that are willing to learn and that has worked out wonderfully because I just spend a little extra time on the front end of the training on helping them understand. And when people really enjoy the process, they like to grow. It’s an opportunity to grow as a human being and as a professional. And so that just kind of goes hand in hand. And that tends to be the better way to go.

Have you worked at all with companies going into India or China or Japan or Korea?

Not personally, but I’ve worked with a lot of people who specialize in those spaces, and right now on the topic of China, the big business right now is getting companies out of China. And that’s just the kind of the way things are right now. India is ramping up as there’s a lot of stuff, a lot of manufacturing, and the focus is shifting to Southeast Asia. Korea is a big space and Vietnam and that string of countries. And then of course India. And you have to have local representation. Especially in India, that place is huge and it’s ridiculously complex. I mean, if you think the United States is complex, that place is just even more. 

So, it’s even more important that you have somebody that you know and trust to help you navigate that particular ocean, and then piece by piece can help you navigate and be successful in that space. So again, it just comes down to having the right partnership.

On the subject of India and international sales in general, the United States is really what we would call an impersonal business culture in that you can pick up the phone and do business with anyone or get an e-mail or see an ad and you don’t necessarily have to have a relationship with the company or that person. 

Whereas in other countries, especially India and especially East Asia, relationships are really key and the key to building relationships is first to build trust over the long term. 

So, what do you do when you have no prior contacts in a new country or part of the world? How do you begin to cultivate a relationship? How do you find a distributor or a representative whom you know would be beneficial to your product?

Well, you have to start off by showing a willingness to understand their culture and their perspective and be there having done a lot of research on your own. But being genuine in your interest in their space and then taking the time to begin those relationships in, you know, in Asian cultures, it’s important that when you visit somebody’s office, you come with a gift and knowing all of the small gestures and knowing all those little cultural nuances and having help with that kind of nuance shows that you’re serious about them as a professional, as a human being, but also serious about the market. And taking the time to do that. 

And then working with partners to find the right distributor partner or a local rep or, you know, set up a subsidiary, if that’s what your company is planning on doing, it’s all a matter of finding the right people to help you do it.

And how do you go about finding them if you have no contacts there?

Being a member of the International Trade Association, that’s been amazing because usually being part of those groups, there’s THC and there’s a whole number of other ones. Also, local trade organizations. The U.S. Department of Commerce has some great programs to get out and go to trade shows and that kind of stuff to kind of get your feet wet. Trying to figure out if it’s the right place to be.

But working through those networks and finding people that have the expertise and the connections. That’s one of the biggest matrix moments for me, which was a bunch of years ago. I was part of a startup company called Dentist Smart, and we built it from conception to commercialization. And we ended up selling the company, but before that, I’ve been working in a corporation where you’re the machine as the employee, you’re the machine turning the crank. 

But when you’re building a company and you’re building things out, there’s this huge mind shift. You don’t have to know everything. You have to know the right people. And that’s when I really started to lean on my network. When I started to really start to lean on, OK, can you help me find somebody who can help me with this particular issue then one thing leads to another and then you find that individual. And that’s how you solve most big problems in life and in business networking really, just knowing where to go.

Yes, it’s very true. And you mentioned the Department of Commerce, which is a wonderful, great support for U.S. companies going abroad and certainly foreign companies coming here as well that can make great introductions. 

Were there any differences in terms of Fortune 500 companies versus medium-sized enterprises or by industry in terms of how you took companies either from abroad to here or from here abroad?

Smaller companies don’t have the resources, so they have to be a little scrappier, but a lot of times what you’ll see is they’re a lot more innovative. Having fewer resources forces you to be more creative and more focused. For example, for about three and a half years I headed up the International Trade Center at the College of DuPage, which is a state- and federal-, and local grant-funded organization to help U.S. companies export and build out their export business.

And so, I put together hundreds of export plans for a number of companies all over Illinois. But you have to be of a certain size, you have to have a certain amount of time. And a lot of the questions that I asked at the beginning were how much time you have to focus on this and what your budget is. Based on the budget, you can do a lot with a little, but you won’t be able to get very far. 

But then all it does is just push out your time horizon so that instead of getting into a market in two to three years, it’ll be a five-year plan. They’ll use the budget to do market research to do it. They get a STEP grant to go on a trade mission to whatever country they think makes the most sense, for example, and just step by step by step. It just slows things down. 

But usually, the most successful companies that get into the export space have someone on staff who’s really dedicated to the process, who is really excited, and who has a particular set of qualifications or background … or is just interested in building a global business and they’re willing to spend the time and the consistent effort to make it happen. And then you find those key people and you work with them. Little by little. You get them into particular target markets that make the most sense after doing the market research.

And the key part is that there has to be a quick win. You have to get into the market and find a way to make some kind of sale to prime the pump and once that gets going then you can learn from that sale and then adapt and then do it again and again and again and again. And then it grows. The next thing you know, companies go from having 0 exports to having it be a third of their business. That kind of thing. But it’s just a matter of speed. 

Although on the other side of the coin, a lot of the big companies, they’re so big kind of getting back to what I talked about at the beginning, where hubris is the biggest impediment to so many things in life and business where they just think that we’re just going to show up. They give us everything you know. 

And so, there’s a lot of eating crows. Because they walk in there and people just ignore them or it doesn’t go the way that they want it to and then they have to totally change the way that they approach the business. Become much humbler with the way that they approach their marketing content and just strategy in general. 

But once they kind of come back down to Earth and make that adjustment and pivot, then they have the resources to really turn up the gas and really hit it hard and really be more successful more quickly once they figure it out.

I’m laughing because in our business the largest companies, as you say, have got … well, I would say that they’re arrogant in many ways. And they think they know it all and they make the classic mistake. They spend millions of dollars introducing their company name, their product name, and their slogan without first checking to see whether it would work in the target language or the top ten target languages. And there have been some marvelous bloopers. The one about the Chevy Nova actually never did happen. That was a misconception. 

But my favorite is when Ford introduced the Pinto car into Brazil; the Pinto was here in the United States, and Ford introduced it into Brazil. And they forgot to check the language, and they discovered that Pinto is a slang word in Brazilian Portuguese for male genitals, which is not the best name. 

And similarly, I think it was AMC, American Motors Corporation, took the Matador car into Puerto Rico, and I think elsewhere in Latin America, and Matador basically means killer. So that’s again not a great name for a car when you’re taking it abroad into a Spanish country. 

So anyway, those are the examples that I certainly caught as well. 

Is there anything else you’d like to add before we close?

I think that when it comes to just going bringing a product anywhere in the world, United States or anywhere else, it just is a matter of you have to do your research. You have to bring in locals to help you understand because as much as people can know the local language and culture as much as they think they do, the fact is that we don’t and just going in and just really getting the information that you need and taking the time to put together a good, localized plan and then executing that plan, over a much longer period of time than what we think it’s going to be and the time just tends to be longer than you want. But leaders of companies want results now or in a year or six months, and that’s just not going to happen. And so just adjusting expectations but taking your time and doing things the right way and the humble way tends to work the best.

Thank you. Before we close, I wanted to remind everyone, all of our listeners, about the other products and services that we have available for you. 

One of them, as I mentioned, is what I would call name screening, Checking the product name, the product’s name, the company name or the tagline, or the slogan in at least ten major languages to ensure that you’re not making a blooper and that your $1,000,000 of investment will not suddenly go up in smoke because you forgot to check something that’s something, of course, that my company, Auerbach International, can certainly do for you as well as any other language translation. Translation or interpreting needs you may have.

More than that. There’s another new service that we’re launching called And it’s basically to obtain the insurance settlements that you deserve insurance from property-casualty and personal injury. And we can do this if you don’t speak English. We can do this in Spanish or any other language for you as well. Through interpreters and translators, language is no longer a barrier to getting you the settlement you deserve. 

There’s another service which is basically a business intelligence growth business, intelligence growth information through a company called RainMakers which is a superb partner of ours.

And finally, a wonderful children’s book that is not tied to anything business-related but is a wonderful children’s book called The DanSing Pancakes which teaches young kids not to do drugs, smoke, or engage in any addictive activities, and is a wonderful lesson to teach kids at a very young age. 

So with that, I wanted to thank our guest today, Zachary Person, who is the head of Borderless Business Solutions. And thank you very much for your wonderful insights and for joining us today.

Thank you very much. Glad to be here.

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