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Make stats and data work for your business

Hear how a Wellington-based business used statistics and data to research their potential market, hone their product, build a case for investment and make better business decisions.

My name is Tal Meser. I'm the co-founder and director of Flatfish. We're a team of four people that's building a platform for landlords, tenants and property managers to rent happy. We're based in Creative HQ, which is a co-working space and accelerator for start-ups like us.

When we were first exploring our new business opportunity, we wanted to learn as much about our potential market as possible. Our core customers are property managers and landlords, so we needed to find out exactly the size of the market we were dealing with there. We were able to find a lot of good, hard stats by looking up the number bonds lodged on the New Zealand Tenancy's website, looking up the number of properties available on TradeMe, and by using Stats New Zealand to really understand the proportion of properties available at the time. That gave us a really good understanding of the market.

I know for ourselves and other businesses we've spoken to, getting your pricing right at the beginning can be a real challenge. Making use of the statistics and data available was really helpful for making those decisions. We looked at average property prices, average rental prices, and tested our value proposition with potential customers to really understand how much they could or would
be willing to pay for the problem we're trying to solve.

It's an exciting time for Flatfish because we're about to start looking to raise capital. We've really honed our product, and we're getting ready to pitch for investment. Using statistics and data will help us make a really good case for investment.

If I was giving advice to another business owner, I'd tell them to first establish what kind of data they're looking for and for what reason. It will make it easier to find the data you're looking for.

If you're stuck, simply pick up the phone and ask. We called up Tenancy New Zealand and they were really helpful in helping us find the data set that we were looking for. I know Statistics New Zealand has a similar service line too.

I really encourage business owners to use stats and data in their upcoming business decisions. It's really good way to minimise risk and maximise your chance of success.

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