Know your market
This lesson will help you to glean a deeper understanding of the market or sector your social enterprise will operate in. Using both primary and secondary modes of research, you'll consolidate more knowledge about the social issue you are approaching. Understanding the different levels of context your social issue is situated in will be essential to creating a successful social enterprise, both commercially and altruistically. From here, you'll be able to best figure out your pricing strategy, customer demographics and branding.
Social Entrepreneurs Discuss
They say three’s a crowd, but whoever said that hadn't used the SWOT, PESTLE and competitor analysis! These three principles are useful tools for understanding your market. SWOT The SWOT analysis describes the internal and external Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats of a business. It’s a useful way of providing an overview of the benefits and challenges you have in the market. We recommend you approach the SWOT analysis from a micro and macro level. PESTLE PESTLE differentiat...
They say three’s a crowd, but whoever said that hadn't used the SWOT, PESTLE and competitor analysis! These three principles are useful tools for understanding your market.
The SWOT analysis describes the internal and external Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats of a business. It’s a useful way of providing an overview of the benefits and challenges you have in the market. We recommend you approach the SWOT analysis from a micro and macro level.
PESTLE differentiates itself from the SWOT analysis as it relates to external issues and macro factors which affect or could affect your business. PESTLE stands for Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental. This could be things like a change of governments (political), the impact of Brexit (economic), or the impact of the ageing population (social).
Finally, competitor analysis is a tool to understand what services or products already exist in your local communities. It’s a good way of scoping out if there is a commercial and social need for your idea. Competitor analysis has four overarching headings: a description of what the business/enterprise does; the value (what value its services bring to its customers); the cost and finally, what makes your enterprise better or more appealing. These could be factors like better accessibility, more personalisation, higher quality, and better for the environment. Remember that when doing a competitor analysis, it’s not always like for like. If, for example, your idea is to deliver workshops to schools about LGBTQ identity, your competitors are not necessarily only LGBTQ organisations but other providers who charge schools for their services.
The difference between qualitative and quantitative research is a fundamental distinction within research practice. This resource outlines how "qual" and "quant" data vary, and the implications for market researchers.
A PESTLE analysis is an audit of six external influences on an organisation: Political, Economic, Sociological, Technological, Legal, and Environmental.This video further unpacks the meaning of PESTLE and explores these influences.
The activities for today's lesson are blank templates for the analysis charts we've discussed. Fill these in to help you consider the overlapping and intertwining contexts your social enterprise is situated in, and what you can do to respond to these thoughtfully.
So, this session focused on market research. We’ve looked into different types of research approaches and methods as ways to gather information about both your commercial and social missions. We appreciate that market research can be a bit dry, but doing it can help you begin to understand the commercial aspects of your business so that you don’t start trading or applying for grant funding without knowing your stuff!