International business can be traced back to many of the earliest civilizations and the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans were all to a great extent involved in trade across their borders. However, the great influence of globalization has developed during the last centuries due to the impact of different driving forces (Yip, 1992) within the economy, which have caused businesses to become internationalized and then globalize.
At the same time, the internationalization has been a slow process for most companies and it has often been a question of gaining experience of other countries step by step. When the home market limits the opportunities it might be necessary for expansion into other market areas. In this situation it has been necessary for the company to attempt to reduce uncertainty by exporting to neighboring markets.
Limited resources might also lead to that the company prefers forms of market entry that are not so costly and hazardous.
However, during the last two decades, companies have developed their international activities more on a contingency basis. The international market behavior has been influenced by a need to take advantage of different market opportunities and by an increasing need to serve customers in the global market environment. Due to the competitive situation it might also have been necessary to introduce products more quickly in the marketplace or to introduce products to several markets simultaneously.
Several researchers within the area of international marketing have, during the last decade, devoted their topics to the process of internationalization. For the most part, this research has been focused (Fletcher, 2001) on factors causing internationalization or to the process why companies become increasingly involved in international activities. Less interest has been devoted to the marketing strategy as such. This paper will therefore be focused on the marketing strategy and the need...