It’s easy to come up with a good idea or two; the hard part is ensuring your idea becomes a commercially viable reality. First, understand how your business idea will fit into the existing market place by answering these questions:
- Is your business idea filling a gap in the market place? If so, how did you reach this determination?
- What point of difference will your business be offering to your potential customers? How do you plan to maximise this advantage?
- Have you researched the existing market? Will your business be entering a market where demand is greater than supply?
- Have you analysed the growth potential of your business idea?
- Have you considered the main opportunities your business has? How will you maximise these?
Market research is a key part of developing your business idea. While you may think your idea is brilliant and sure to succeed, it will still need to be researched and planned to increase the likelihood of success. There are several methods used to research your tourism idea.
ANALYSE TOURISM STATISTICS
There is a wealth of up to date statistical tourism information readily available for you to analyse. For international, national and state information visit:
For more localised reports try the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
Some questions to consider when conducting market research include:
- What are the top markets into WA at the moment?
- Is my preferred target market represented here?
- How are these markets performing?
- How is the tourism industry in general performing?
- What marketing is Tourism WA currently doing in my preferred market?
- What current economic conditions are adversely affecting the tourism industry?
- What current economic conditions are positively affecting the tourism industry?
- What are the future predictions for the tourism industry?
SURVEY POTENTIAL CLIENTS
One way to determine the viability of your new business idea is to survey potential customers, you can do this in person, through focus groups, over the phone or online. Here are some survey tips:
- Choose a location to conduct your survey that is frequented by your ideal customer such as a major tourist attraction or destination.
- Always seek approval from property owners or local council before conducting a survey.
- Analyse the results of your survey – if the results clearly show that your idea is not as viable as you believed, then do not start the business.
ASK THE INDUSTRY
What better way to find out how the industry is performing than to ask those currently operating within it.
Meeting with tourism industry professionals and like-minded businesses and asking candid questions is a great way to get the real truth. Here are some suggestions:
- Local Visitor Centre
- Regional Tourism Organisation
- Tourism Council WA
- Tourism Western Australia
- Major attractions
- Other tourism operators
OTHER MARKET RESEARCH AVENUES
- IBISWorld – make a booking through the Small Business Development Corporation to use this market research tool for free.
- FMRC benchmarking - make a booking through the Small Business Development Corporation.
ANALYSING YOUR COMPETITORS
Even if you feel that your business idea is unique and new, you will still find that you have competitors that you will need to consider.
What are the unique strengths and attributes that your business has and what are the advantages that you will have over the competition?
When you are conducting your market analysis consider if you are stronger than, equal to, or weaker than your competitors in the following areas:
- Product or service range
- Method of distribution
- Appearance and image
- Level of customer service
- Brand recognition
- Growth potential