For a relatively tight-knit market where penetration of outside and unconventional services rarely succeeds, Japan has already warmed up to the idea of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) due to the various benefits it offers to any type of industry. Based on a recent study of Gartner, the SaaS market in Japan is expected to rise to $495.2 million this year, which is a 16% increase from last year. This figure provides a clear picture of how strong this type of service is being accepted in the market right now and how it is going to further impact different sectors in Japan in the coming years. Whether you’re in the government or private sector, SaaS has definitely made an indelible mark in improving business operations in Japan leading to an evil growth in their respective markets.
The main components which have made SaaS particularly appealing to the Japanese are its ease of use and customization features to suit the needs of a business. Japan has always been known to be the driving force in technology especially in the Asia-Pacific market. Keeping ahead of the times and its competitors means deploying the latest and fastest IT systems possible to stay on top. What could be more advanced than an online-based system? It is where technology is at and where the future of the entire world relies on. Another factor to consider when it comes to SaaS advantages is the opportunity to lower expenses when buying hardware and software systems. With SaaS, Japanese companies are able to control their costs with competitively priced applications which are on a subscription-based fee.
With the unfortunate tsunami event last year, local businesses are searching for alternative means to support their operations in case another disaster strikes again. The diversity and flexibility of the SaaS make it one of the better options that companies could look into to preserve their businesses. Though this newfound appreciation for the less than traditional approach has already been recognized, companies wanting to offer their own on-demand software still need to go through a number of hurdles before triumphing in this exclusive and hard to convince consumer market.
For starters, the Japanese would welcome and appreciate more your offered service and all other marketing strategies if they understood what you are selling and saying. Case in point, write your texts in Japanese language. If you have a website, manual or social networking account, you better hire a good translator or communication specialist to get your message across your target market the right way. If you want to do one step better, make sure to have a competent Japanese team on your side who knows the market more than you do especially if you are a foreigner.
Moreover, the Japanese also responds more positively to personalized services and who wouldn’t? When business owners themselves take the time to chat or answer customer comments and questions, that is what sets them apart from the rest. Japanese consumers feel more valued when service providers directly interact with them as if they were their real friends. Timely responses offered in a courteous manner always give off the right vibe especially for a country that values good manners and professionalism as part of their personal and work ethics.
As in any other country, a marketing scheme is always a topnotch priority when trying to break into a new market. If you want your SaaS product to be noticed, researching the channels to saturate should be of paramount importance. When it comes to Japan, social media is a definite gateway to promote your product. With Facebook and Twitter booming in the market, you can take advantage of these networking sites but always remember to not overdo it as it can backfire on you. Introducing prizes or freebies for signing up to your service could also lead to more users. It will attract more customers who shall then spread the word on your product and with everything in Japan nowadays, a good word or a rave review always goes a long way.
There are indeed grand opportunities waiting to be discovered for SaaS providers wanting to infiltrate this previously closed market. If approached the right way, you can gain more than what you initially expected in this flourishing market in Japan.
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About the Guest Author:
Rodolfo Lentejas, Jr. is a fulltime freelance writer based in Toronto. He is the founder of the PostSckrippt, a growing online writing business dedicated to producing top quality, original and fresh content. To know more about him, please visit www.postsckrippt.ca. Like him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.