Gifting Knowledge This Holiday Season

As this year wraps up, perhaps you are looking to take the leap and start a business full-time. Maybe you already own a small business, but you are ready to expand and take it to the next level. Whatever your goals are for your small business in Iowa, we are here to help.

The Business Concierge program is offered through the University of Northern Iowa’s Center for Business Growth and Innovation. Through the program, you can receive free business help, market research, connections to resources throughout Iowa, and encouragement along the way.

Are you looking for a consumer mailing or prospecting list of folks interested in quilting to send a marketing message to? Wonder what consumers in your area spend on cosmetics? Think it might be neat to know how your business stacks up against a competitor? Do you need more refined demographic information, traffic counts, or financing opportunities and not sure which program to start with? The Business Concierge can help!

Here are some examples of our capabilities:

Industry reports – Looking for information on current trends in your industry? We can pull research on industry key trends, current performance, and outlook.

Financial benchmarking – Are you putting together financial projections for your business plan or curious about how your business compares financially to your peers? Based on the industry, financial benchmarking reports look at balance sheets, income statements, and financial ratios for small, medium and large companies. You can get an idea of how your business compares financially to your industry average.

Competitors – How does your business stack up to your competitors? Look no further for information on products/services offered, pricing, annual sales revenue, number of employees, marketing strategies, and more for your closest competitors.

Mailing or prospect lists (businesses or consumers) – Looking to ramp up your marketing efforts? Consumer mailing lists can be created based on your target market including geography, age, gender, household income, and interests. We can also create targeted business lists based on geography, size (number of employees or sales revenue), and industry. These lists can also include specific contacts within the businesses.

Demographic reports – Perhaps you are looking for data to include in your business plan about your target market. Learn about the age, gender, income level, and interests of your customers through demographic data.

Consumer spending – How much are consumers in your area spending on restaurants, cosmetics, recreation, lawn care, and more?

Customized research – Our motto is ‘Ask Us Anything!’ Feel free to reach out with any specific statistics or research you are looking for. We are up for the challenge!

Finally, we are connected state-wide with resource providers and can connect you with a high quality referral to a program or professional that will provide you with the best information possible.

Visit our website to learn more and submit a request to the Business Concierge. I encourage you to spend a few minutes this month assessing your progress and planning for the future of your business. Take advantage of the many resources available to small businesses in Iowa and make next a year to remember.

Chelsea Morrison, Business Information Specialist, UNI Center for Business Growth and Innovation

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