Business planning series – Part 2: Product, service and market analysis
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Business planning series – Part 2: Product, service and market analysis

Welcome to part 2 of our business planning
series – product or service and marketing analysis
Market research is a key element of business planning; it helps you target your ideal customer,
identify new opportunities and improve your sales performance. Successful businesses make regular market
research the foundation of their marketing and sales planning. You develop your best
strategies and tactics for marketing when you base them on hard data. This data comes
from an analysis of your market that identifies and describes:
The people in the marketplace – Good customer research helps you choose products, tailor
your marketing, set pricing and develop sales tactics
Your competitors – be sure to conduct a competitor analysis. By having a thorough
understanding of your competition, you will be able to determine what you can do better,
what will be your competitive advantage? The business environment—you need to understand
the industry that your business operates in. Is the industry in growth or decline? Are
there any barriers to entry? Your research should also include any political, legal,
economic, social and cultural issues or trends that can affect your business. It is important to clearly define your market
research goals so that you can give yourself the best chance of finding accurate and useful

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