Corridor supports aspiring entrepreneurs with innovative website service to plan small business openings

15 Feb 2022

Entrepreneurship, Small Business, Development, Technology, Blog, News Release, Press Release


SizeUpIowaLakes provides free market research to foster local entrepreneurship

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 Just in time for National Entrepreneurship Week, the Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation (Corridor) has announced a new tool to empower local aspiring entrepreneurs through an innovative online service called SizeUpIowaLakes. The service will be available for free to all local entrepreneurs on the Corridor website beginning in early March.

A national entrepreneurship boom is now occurring as entrepreneurs starting new businesses has reached historic highs. This is a positive sign for the future of the economy and welcome news as an economic boost to replace economic activity and businesses lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The first third of each year is typically when most new businesses start. Every month in 2021 resulted in the highest number of new business starts compared to the same month for the past 15 years.

To make successful decisions and reduce the risk of failure, aspiring entrepreneurs need resources to help them plan for their business opening. As this large group of new entrepreneurs enters the marketplace, they need data and market research to create solid business plans.

SizeUpIowaLakes provides powerful market research and business intelligence that is both industry specific and hyperlocal. It includes the same and similar data that is used by huge corporations, but which has been historically inaccessible to small businesses because of the cost and expertise required to analyze data. SizeUpIowaLakes helps to level the business playing field by empowering local entrepreneurs and small businesses with these data insights at no cost to them so that they can make data-driven decisions just like the biggest companies.

Aspiring entrepreneurs can use SizeUpIowaLakes to:

  • Validate or reject their assumptions about their business’ future performance based on objective industry data.
  • Discover potential customers and suppliers to grow their business.
  • Optimize their advertising and marketing to targeted and preferred customers.
  • Analyze the characteristics and spending of consumers in the area.

The Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation wants the businesses that open in the Iowa Lakes Corridor Region to succeed and grow. An important way to support our entrepreneurs is by starting them off with a solid foundation in their planning,” said Corridor President & CEO Shannon Landauer. “SizeUpIowaLakes gives our entrepreneurs information they need to realistically assess their assumptions using data relevant to their industry and to discover business opportunities.”

Research from the Review of Economics and Statistics published by MIT press for Harvard University shows that new businesses account for nearly all net new job creation and almost 20 percent of gross job creation. The creation of new jobs is valuable to the economic growth of the Corridor region, which is why entrepreneur-supporting programs are important.

“In today’s information economy, businesses without access to information are at a higher risk of failure and stunted growth,” said Corridor VP of Business Development Tom Nelson. “The Corridor is committed to helping entrepreneurs start, operate, and grow through the support of programs and services like SizeUpIowaLakes. “

The software powering the SizeUpIowaLakes won the 1st Place award from the United States Department of Commerce for a business app that helps American businesses be more competitive, improve their success, foster prosperity, and create more jobs. 

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The Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation is the regional economic development agency for Buena Vista, Clay, Dickinson and Emmet counties. Its mission is to foster, encourage, aid, promote or otherwise assist in the economic growth and development of the region. For more information about the Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation, call 712-264-3474 or visit