The best vertical market for you is the one in which you have strengths, where you have permission to play, where you have something competitive to offer that buyers value. So the simple — but not easy — advice is to do an analysis of your own strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats: a SWOT.
It’s actually the “S” — the strength — that’s the significant bit, along with the opportunities. Identifying the opportunities fully may indeed require some research input. But unless you, or your advisors, are starting from a good, comprehensive view of real and relevant strengths, you won’t get far. Strengths to think about should include:
— > market access: areas where your brand works to allow you to talk to the right buyers at the right level;
— > references: customer cases whose stories (if properly told) will resonate with the right buyers;
— > knowledge of the customers’ business: you can’t fake this;
— > value to offer that the right buyers will perceive as value;
— > an ability to articulate all that in enough depth and compellingly.
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Almost postulates by which to guide your marketing strategy. It’s about your strengths, unless your market knowledge and your resources are endless.
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