Looking for customers? Free data tools can help

To make the most of tight marketing budgets, find out as much as you can about your target customers. Here’s how one small business used free data to plan for growth. 

When Peter Fraser started his photography business Foto Diem, specialising in family portraits and weddings, he was following his passion — but he wanted the business to satisfy him financially as well as creatively.

“I wanted to know what regions I should be focusing on, with which services.”

Fraser used Statistics NZ’s free data for businesses (external link) on the advice of a friend.

Data for business (external link) — Statistics NZ data on customers and industries

Defining a market

He started with the Market Mapper tool (external link) , which refines searches for customers by factors like age, income, family type and location.

Fraser found areas with the greatest numbers of families, which showed him where to focus his marketing efforts.

Next, he looked at opportunities for wedding photography across the country. Using the Infoshare (external link) and NZ.Stat tools (external link) he estimated:

  • potential number of marriages by region
  • number of photography businesses in each region
  • regions with higher average incomes.

The results meant he quickly saw which regions had the greatest potential for this service.

Finally, he explored opportunities for baby portraits, using Infoshare (external link) to find the number of births in each district health board region.

Contacts address book

For help finding the data you want, call Statistics NZ on 0508 525 525 or email info@stats.govt.nz

Success in business depends on investing your time and money wisely.

Success in business depends on investing your time and money wisely.

“Using data can help you get the best bang for your buck,” says photographer Peter Fraser. 

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