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August 10, 2008

Quantified support - geographical context

Geography matters - location matters. What you sell and how you are doing is intimately related to the demographics surrounding the store and the characteristics of your product. If this is on the money then...

The human observer does not have the capacity to comprehend the multitude of variables that constitute a market. Even if your business has only 10 or 20 stores - and you visit each monthly - how well do you really understand the pulse of each location? Quantifiable information in support of your observations are the key. Thus location becomes the anchor connecting your point-of-sale data while establishing links to Neilson Market data, census, survey, even your coupon mailing...

The point being that observing a place regularly can in fact provide a false sense of understanding that place. The world is constantly changing - economics of neighborhoods and cities evolve - children grow older... Assuming you have an understanding of a place is a risk. Comically, the memory plays tricks about location... Remember when you were young? The snow was deeper.... Change. You. You are taller now - it isn't that the snow was deeper. Demographics change and so does your market.

Quantifiable support to desicions based on location enabled integration of key data - not only will you see your performance more clearly you will understand the explanation and can thus plan and anticipate the next opportunity more accurately.

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