It is important to find out as much as you can about the market in your chosen area. You can search local business directories and media for information on competitors and suppliers. You may also find out about potential customers.
Researching your market
Invest Northern Ireland (NI) offers advice and support to local businesses for market research.
You can also try visiting your local library or carrying out online searches. Find your local library in Northern Ireland.
The Business Information Centre at Invest Northern Ireland has access to a number of worldwide company directories and can also help with market research. You can also use our company database which has a directory listing of over 40,000 Northern Ireland businesses.
Talk to trade associations in your sector to see if they have a directory of members.
Media and promotion
Promoting your business is essential. Business directories and local media are an excellent way to promote your business in the region. They are also a great source of information about potential customers, suppliers and competitors.
The Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce (NICC) have a searchable directory of members.
You should consider using the media for research and promoting your business. Major newspapers in Northern Ireland are:
- Belfast Telegraph
- Irish News
- News Letter
The Belfast Telegraph, News Letter and Irish News also have online resources.
The main business magazines are:
- Ulster Business
- Business Eye
- Business Month
The main Northern Ireland broadcast media include:
- BBC Northern Ireland
- UTV Radio
- Cool FM
- Downtown Radio
- City Beat
- Today FM
You should also look into the local media in your area. ABYZ Newslink provide a list of NI newspapers, magazines and broadcast media.