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Identification of market opportunities in a business-to-business market
2003 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The choice of which customers to serve is one of the most important decision a company has to take. It must shift its resources out of maturing and declining markets into new emerging ones in order to survive on the arena of competition. The company can look for the opportunity to trade up existing customers, find new uses or encourage new applications of the product, that is in other words: market opportunities. Identifying market opportunities is about scanning the market and look for customers or segments of customers which can be served by the seller’s competencies, skills and resources. Market segmentation is one way to scan the market in the purpose of identifying market opportunities. The economical downturn in the industry of telecom has affected the customers as well as the suppliers. One of these suppliers is the Swedish company Ericsson AB. The segment Mobile Operators has been and still is Ericsson’s most important customer segment. However, the downturn of this market has made Ericsson to look for new and alternative customer segments in order to keep the sales and manufacturing levels on a sustainable level. Ericsson’s estimations show that approximately 30 % of the sold point-to- point radio-links are sold to the non-cellular market in spite of the market efforts have been focused on the mobile operators. Consequently, the following question is motivated: Could it be a market opportunity hiding in those 30 %? This thesis’s academic research problem is formulated as: How to identify market opportunities in a business-to-business market? In order to answer this question, three research question is formulated as: How to identify customer segments in a business-to-business market?, How to evaluate customer segments in a business-to-business market?, and finally How to select customers segments in a business-to-business market? A two-stage segmentation process, which involved thirteen interviews, was conducted in order to identify customer segments in the Swedish non-cellular market. Once the segments were identified, a simplified model of Sarabia’s evaluation model was carried out with the purpose of assessing the attractiveness by each segment respectively, and finally the target markets were selected on the basis of this evaluation. The result of the thesis indicates that the above described approach is suitable for the purpose of identifying market opportunities. But it is also time-consuming and resource demanding. The applied segmentation process is a structured way to segment the market, which also involves a subjective and a structured way of thinking. In that way, there is also a risk of missing a potential opportunity depending on the researcher’s personal opinion and aspect.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Technology, Industrial Marketing, Segmentation, Market opportunities
Keyword [sv]
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-58557ISRN: LTU-EX--03/060--SELocal ID: f2414e32-25f3-4514-9bda-6f36ef511b4aOAI: diva2:1031945
Subject / course
Student thesis, at least 30 credits
Educational program
Industrial and Management Engineering, master's level
Validerat; 20101217 (root)Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04Bibliographically approved

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