In the July August issue of HBR a concept was discussed around creating opportunity maps: Detailed maps of where you are selling, what your share is, and what the opportunity is.
Detailed market information like this is a gold mine for businesses, and a key way that IT professionals can help catapult growth. The key is to “Make it easy for the sales team”.

Creating opportunity maps can be complicated and involves two important factors.
1. Having a detailed view of market size, which can usually be obtained through finding a full list of potential customers, and developing some simple estimates of their purchasing power. At Data Ladder we have helped dozens of businesses find these lists and develop market size approximations.
2. Linking the full market list to your current customer list.
The linking step can be difficult as full market lists can often be large in size (Hundreds of thousands or millions of records) with inconsistent and error prone data. This is where record linkage software can really shine. By making this linkage possible, sales teams can have the data they need to target micro markets, determine what opportunities have the best chance to convert, and focus their teams on addressable customer specific opportunities.

The average next year sales increase related to the exercise was 5%, up to 120% in some cases. The average is based on 32 businesses, note the 120% increase was for a $150 Million dollar sub division in a Fortune 500 company.
Please contact us to learn more about opportunity maps and how they can help your organization.

Linda Boudreau
Data Ladder LLC