Besides a great history, Turkey, which is located in the heart of the world, has an enormously rich culture, bridging the West and the East, the North and the South. This is why there is always opportunity here for anyone who comes with an open mind, and can build good relationships with people. And surely, the rich culture enables people to benefit from a variety of opportunities.
Year by year, Turkey is growing up fast to embrace entrepreneurship. Unlike the economy of its siblings, Turkey is not focused on only one major economic area, which makes it the “land of dreams”. Culture, population, and the location are the main reasons that global companies can establish their brands and services to cater to any type of customer profile. Not only is there a big potential for existing players, but also a huge market for companies with newer business models. This is the big picture, and those who can see this perfect combination can gain immensely. Big slices, big wins!
However, business culture is always affected by traditional customs. Some brands have to customize their products/services to cater to Turkish people, which may be completely different from the European, Asian or American business models. This has resulted in an ‘open advantage’ market. You can find that some companies continue to follow traditional business models, which means not steering away from classic standards. These companies, who are hesitant to innovate or experiment with more creative ways of doing business, mostly operating in the SME market, especially outside of Istanbul. But Istanbul, the capital and the biggest city of Turkey, carries 80% potential of Turkish business on its shoulders. This big ratio has meant that businesses are getting more innovative and creative in every area.
All sectors including FMCG, E-commerce (digital marketing), real estate, information technologies, health, energy, entertainment, media, telecom, fashion and design are getting more innovative and moving away from traditional business models.
Turkey combines the old and the new working in parallel, and at the same time. Can you imagine how this gives Turkey a big advantage compared to other regions? Of course this does stem from its rich cultural background, but it can be leveraged by anyone who is keen on taking the first step.
Running a business in Turkey does come with its own challenges. Turkish business owners recognize the importance of capital in starting and running a business. While money can open up new opportunities, it is a limited resource. Also, having a new and a modern product can be difficult to sell to Turkish customers, as they may not be very familiar to the concept. However, there are companies that are trying to innovate and incorporate latest technologies into their business to increase their market potential.
Building a successful business requires a good network, and the ability to build good relationships with your customer. This principle will always work in the Turkish market, no matter what. As mentioned before, focus on people is what makes Turkey so customary. Even in corporates, it all depends on how you are able to create a strong relationship with your partner, keeping all business procedures and formalities aside. As long as businesses can keep this spirit high, they can become successful.
It’s time for businesses to embrace change, release their apprehensions, and benefit from this excellent environment that Turkey has to offer. There will always be some resistance to change, but at the end, technology liberates people despite all customs, codes and norms.
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