How Business Plans Work

The Market: Analysis & Segmentation

Market Analysis

In the first section of the Market Analysis, define your market using concrete numbers and percentages. In other words, how many potential users are there for your product or service? If you are offering a regional service and have found that there are 80,000 potential customers in your geographic area, then this is where you put that information. Explain the growth and other changes you see in the market and how the competition is flailing, failing or flourishing as a result. Include some market history if it applies to your product and market. You may not be able to go back three years because the market didn't exist! Refer to the statistics and data you've discovered through your market research and be sure to quote the source and date. You can also include information about outside influences on the market (i.e., government regulations, union activities, etc.), seasonality of the market, and the typical industry life cycle.


Your market may be segmented by price, quality, region, customer age, income, buying behavior, industry or anything else. Determine what those segments are and describe the ones you are going to target. By focusing on specific segments you'll have a better chance of success. Remember it's hard to be all things to all people. Keep in mind that your product will probably also cross into several market segments. Remember to address each segment in your marketing planning.