Friday, June 29, 2012

Yet another market size myth... all markets are not created equal

Ever heard of Las Vegas? Memphis? New Orleans?

Sure you have. They are big cities, so well known you don't need to tell viewers what state they're in.

Now, ever heard of Spartanburg? How about Anderson?

Unless you've spent time in the deep south, you probably haven't. But those towns, get this, are bigger markets than the three cities mentioned above. Yet when you think of going to a bigger market, you never think of towns like this.

How is this possible? How is the town of Anderson, South Carolina, a town of 27 thousand people, a bigger market than Las Vegas, home of nearly six hundred thousand?

The answer is that markets are often geographical. In the case of Spartanburg and Anderson, they are South Carolina towns that are part of a large geographical area that doesn't really contain a big city. In the case of Las Vegas, there's really nothing once you get outside of Vegas. The market is Vegas, and that's it. Bottom line, there are more viewers if you add up all the small towns in that South Carolina market than in the city of Las Vegas.

So Vegas is market 40 and those South Carolina towns are part of market 37.

There are also small towns that are adjacent to big markets. Lawrence, Kansas is part of the Kansas City market. But no one would ever consider that town a big market.

Every market is different. You may think big market equals big city experience, but that is not always the case.

Remember, markets are nothing more than numbers. There are some smaller markets that are wonderful places to live and large markets that are the ninth circle of hell. Some big cities are in smaller markets than small towns.

When shopping for a new job, don't just consider the number. Consider what qualities that market holds.


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