Of the many programs the US government has developed to help American businesses, we would like to focus today on the US Commercial Service. This is a group of dedicated men and women whose job is to help businesses export their products to the world. We met the local representative at a seminar they held to help small businesses understand and navigate the complexities of exporting. And yes, it is complex. When we decided to export to the EU, the local rep worked with us to identify the best markets and vet prospective distributors. Many times it was just a simple question ( what does F.O.B. mean? ) and sometimes they connected us with experts , such as help with translations and EU website requirements.
Recently, we have decided to explore the Asian market, and the Commercial Service has started the process by naming us as a Featured US Exporter (FUSE- they love acronyms in the gov't). This brings attention to our company from prospective importers and helps get the ball rolling. They will also use their local experts in the various countries to bring attention to our products.
So when someone starts whining about the vast bureaucracy that is government, tell them about the US Commercial Service. If you are a small manufacturer in the US, contact your local rep and start a conversation. You will be amazed at what they can do to help. Go to https://www.trade.gov/export-solutions