Where Exactly Is the Target Market? Using Geographic Information Systems for Locating Potential Customers of a Small Business

Almost without exception, entrepreneurs are advised to define a target market for their company. Instead of being “All things to all people,” entrepreneurs must know what unmet needs their company is designed to meet, and how to meet the needs of potential customers in the target market. However, because of resource limitations, many entrepreneurs discover that finding the location of customers in the target market can be very difficult. In recent years, the convergence of several trends has made Geographic Information Systems (GIS) accessible to small businesses. GIS has the potential to help entrepreneurs pinpoint the location of customers in a target market. The authors applied GIS to a start-up company’s sales data to test whether GIS delivers on its promise.

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Rice Software Consulting