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German native helps conquer German market

German natives. For a Dutch company that wants to make its mark across the border, indispensable. When you work with someone who masters the language, whether employed or at an agency, you have gold in your hands. Tanja Strump is German native and works as Country Manager DACH for We talk to her about the importance of a native approach and her goal of making one of the largest online phone cases and accessories sellers in the Netherlands, the market leader in Germany.

Tanja came to the Netherlands to study communication sciences. During her studies, she rolled into the online marketing profession. At Dexport, she worked in the largest team of German-speaking marketing specialists in the Netherlands. "At Dexport, I learned the intricacies of the business and my passion for e-commerce was born.IMG 0188 Everything can be measured through and from there you can strategize." After working for several big names, she ended up at which was set up in 2011 by Martijn Hooft. Soon after, his brothers Marcel & Stefan joined the company. The focus of the Hooft brothers was initially on selling phone accessories to small entrepreneurs, but in the meantime the company has grown into a successful international business with a large B2B branch. In addition to country-specific online shops for the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Austria, the French webshop was recently launched and new premises are being built in Leusden.

Country manager DACH

As country manager, Tanja has been ultimately responsible for all German-speaking countries since the beginning of April: Business Unit DACH. Germany has a special focus here and the question internally flares up: what do we still need to do through channels to achieve more sales within Germany? Competitive analysis, pricing policy, assortment and distinctive value are examined in more detail in addition to the use of marketing channels. Tanja's focus now is on responding even better to the German market and consumers. For example, things like the marketing calendar play an important role. "What works for the German? What are specific actions you can capitalize on?" The country-specific assortment piece is also important to look at more closely. "Are we sufficiently in line with the competition there? Take e-readers, for example. Very different brands are popular in Germany than in the Netherlands. Implementing your strategy for the Netherlands directly in Germany doesn't work. You have to take a focused look." 

Specific approach

Indeed, Germany deserves that specific approach. The country is unique and different from how Dutch consumers search and buy. For example, Amazon is indispensable in Germany. Although that also sometimes requires challenge. "Our preference is to sell through our own webshop. Not only do you then have the customer data, you also know for sure that you can offer your customer the best service and advice. After all, you can't always guarantee that very well on Amazon." Still, not pass up sales via Amazon. "It is not the case with us that customers come back weekly for repeat purchases. After all, buying a phone and its accessory is a very targeted action. You do that maybe once a year. In addition, Google and Amazon are important channels for us and incredibly large in Germany."

" is doing good business across the border and Tanja is an excellent manager to build on this success. The German consumer landscape is becoming increasingly fragmented. Because of this, you do now need a complete team of German natives. Amazon marketing, SEO, Google Ads and social media are disciplines for which you need several subject specialists who are familiar with the German language. In our experience, a combination of internal and external specialists with a country-specific responsible manager yields the best results. Not everyone can afford that. At Dexport, we have now built up a complete German marketing team and can complement companies in all areas."

Andreas Giese - CEO Dexport


Marketing channels

In Germany, much of the focus is on their own webshop and Amazon. Furthermore, they are active on almost all marketing channels such as search, shopping, affiliate, other marketplaces, email, offline and socials. has a social media team and its own team for design and content. Photography and posts are provided and collaborations with bloggers and influencers are realized. "A channel like Instagram is perfect here to show the products in context." Email is also hugely important and Smartphonehoesjes also knows how to gain a lot offline. For example, by advertising in package inserts. 


The crossborder vision of Tanja and is clear: business success with a focus on customer satisfaction and the most extensive product range. Ensuring customer satisfaction through (German) natives plays an important role in this. For the future, Smartphonehoesjes wants to maintain their market leadership position in the Netherlands and Belgium. They also want to develop towards the market leader position in Germany, Austria and France.