Understanding the market is crucial for any business leader. It is necessary to assess potential opportunities, make strategic business decisions and fend off competitors. One of the most effective ways to understand your market is to undertake a detailed market analysis. But many B2B leaders might be unsure of how to go about this. So let's walk through a structured approach to market analysis in five steps.
The first step is to clearly define the market you're planning to investigate - industry, geographical area, and customer segments. This may seem straightforward, but it's easy to make it over broad or too narrow. Remember, your defined market needs to fit your business model and growth objectives. Also, define the timeframe for your market analysis – whether it’s a snapshot or a forecast.
Now that you've defined your market, you'll need to collect key data points. These will vary depending on your industry, target market, and product or service, but generally, they should include the size of your market, the growth rate of the market, and market trends.
Sources to leverage here could include industry reports, market research published by consultancies, government databases, trade journals, and cutting-edge tools like Aomni, which provides real-time account research using AI.
Next, develop a deep understanding of your customer segments. Know their demographics, psychographics, and behaviours. This may involve analysing primary data or carrying out surveys to reveal consumer attitudes and purchasing behaviors.
For each segment, you should also try to estimate potential market share. Consider factors like the number of potential customers and the average spending per customer to reach a total market value.
A comprehensive market analysis wouldn’t be complete without understanding your competition. Identify direct and indirect competitors and understand their products, pricing, go-to-market strategies, strengths, weaknesses, and market share.
Developing a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis for each of your key competitors will provide a deep understanding not only about your competition but also areas where you can outshine them.
It's now time to bring it all together. Use the gathered data to identify market opportunities, challenges, threats, and competitive positioning. This comprehensive picture helps you make informed decisions, such as whether your product or service will be successful, if there is an adequate market for it, and how it should be marketed.
Remember, the point of this market analysis isn’t to compile a report that sits unopened on someone’s desk. The end goal is to use the insights to shape your strategy.
While market analysis may seem daunting initially, it can be straightforward when broken down into these five steps. The insights gained will provide you with a superior understanding of the market you're operating in, the consumers within it, and the competitors you're up against.
However, as startup founders and enterprise sales leaders, we know building and maintaining market analysis can take time and resources. That's why tools like Aomni can make all the difference. It allows you to get real-time account research and actionable competitive insights in only 15 minutes, saving you time and presenting data in an actionable format.
In conclusion, comprehensively understanding your market is a prerequisite before launching a product or service or entering a new market. It helps you identify opportunities, understand your customers better, and stay ahead of the competition. A systematic and thorough market analysis is undoubtedly a significant first step towards that.