In our new Global Marketplace series, check out travel reflections from Dan Oscarson, IAA’s Vice President of Global Market Development. In this article, see how the team cultivates value through encouraging participation by Central American buyers in the most competitive bidding environment in the industry.

Expanding IAA’s buyer network beyond our borders is no small task – but is certainly a rewarding experience for all of us at IAA and a boon for our sellers as well. Our global market development initiatives don’t simply focus on attracting as many prospective buyers as we can. Instead, we take a strategic approach to connect with the right buyers.

Bringing these buyers to the auction creates a more competitive bidding environment, raises the total number of bids and increases the units sold to foreign-based buyers. Right now, these buyers are one of our fastest growing segments, and we’re eager to continue developing international markets.

Attracting foreign-based buyers is an important part of IAA’s commitment to obtaining the highest possible returns. This commitment requires us to spend time outside of the United States, like during a recent visit to Central America in October 2016.

Connecting in Central America

Although we had previously hosted seminars and workshops in Costa Rica, El Salvador and Guatemala earlier in 2016, we continued to push into countries with a healthy interest in our vehicles resulting in a visit to buyers in Honduras. IAA is well known throughout Central America and both existing and prospective buyers alike flocked to our events. This was an excellent time to network and listen to our buyers tell us that they find IAA especially approachable. Our in-country visits, no doubt, contribute to that sentiment.

As we traveled through Central America, buyer relations improved as we answered questions, addressed concerns and developed trust. When we visit buyers in their country, we are no longer a faceless corporation. Rather, we are welcomed by enthusiastic buyers and prospective buyers who are pleased to meet us. They gladly listen as we teach them how to make the most of their car-buying experience at IAA and improve their ability to make money. As a result of these trips, we regularly identify ways to further support our buyers, whether it’s hosting additional workshops or creating engagement on social media channels. In the end, we provide our buyers with confidence to make the right buying decisions. Paying this level of attention to our international network only helps to create more interest in IAA resulting in increased bid activity, more competition and higher selling prices.

The needs of buyers vary throughout the unique regions and markets of the world, and we take time to cater to their specific needs on a regional and local basis. In 2017, we’ll be traveling to a variety of destinations from Latin America to the Middle East and beyond. In each market, we will execute our unique global marketing strategy – each with a different perspective on the individual or regional market. This is an exciting time for IAA as we forge ahead with an increased outreach to foreign-based buyers, to learn about their unique circumstances and provide solutions to meet their particular needs.

Be sure to watch this space for post-trip reflections as we continue our work to develop buyer markets around the world.

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