The Prime Growth Framework for
Identify prime growth small businesses: independents or small chains, that are employers, with a commercial location, currently planning expansion. Determine the format, scale and timing of their planned growth, and if they are likely to fit your lending criteria.
Enhance your use of data & evidence to make your marketing or sales team a more integrated and valuable part of the small business ecosystem.
1. Prime Growth Classification
2. Sector Monitoring
3. The Prime Growth Briefing
4. Value Alignment
Gain a powerful new perspective on the small business sector
Prime Growth Classification
At the core of the framework is Prime Growth Classification, a growth-based classification standard for the small business sector. Growth-based classification uses development stage, growth format and growth scale to categorize firms rather than traditional small business segmentation (revenues, company age, company size, and digital engagement).
The purpose of the standard is to identify current prime growth firms and segment them by their current growth priorities.
Prime growth firms are independents or small chains, that are employers, with a commercial location, currently at a seed or expansion development stage (new or high growth). The Prime Growth Framework for Commercial Lenders focuses only on expansion stage firms.
Growth priorities are the big picture context of an owner’s current growth plans – the format and scale of growth they are currently working to accomplish.
Why this matters
Most small business owners are not motivated by growth1 and the vast majority are not receptive to new solutions2.
Prime growth firms are the small businesses most likely to be motivated3 and receptive4. When you can identify prime growth firms and determine their current growth priorities, you can deliver solutions that support those priorities, making your company a more integrated and valuable part of the small business ecosystem.
Traditional small business segmentation does not provide the ability to identify prime growth firms or their growth priorities, as the key indicators are current development stage, growth format, and growth scale5.
Learn more about Prime Growth Classification
1. Only 24% of owners report wanting their firm to be “as large as possible”, and more than 50% of owners cite lifestyle benefits such as “flexibility over schedule” or “be my own boss” as a primary reason for starting their firm. Pugsley, Benjamin Wild and Erik Hurst. “What Do Small Businesses Do?”, Brookings Papers On Economic Activity, Fall 2011. Available online. Only 33% of owners say their primary goal is to grow. The Hartford. “2015 Small Business Success Study”, 2015. Available online. 2. Waters, Steve. “Why The Vast Majority of Small Businesses Are Not Receptive to New Solutions”, SMB Intelligence, May 2018. Available online.. 3. Waters, Steve. “Most Small Business Owners are Motivated by Lifestyle – Not Growth”, SMB Intelligence, May 2018. Available online. 4. Waters, Steve. “Identifying the Small Businesses Most Receptive to New Solutions”, SMB Intelligence, May 2018. Available online. 5.Waters, Steve. “Growth-based Classification vs. Traditional Small Business Segmentation”, SMB Intelligence, May 2018. Available online.
Continually monitor the sector to identify current prime growth firms
SMB Intelligence uses proprietary open-source intelligence (OSINT) methods applied through a combination of machine analysis and human analytics.
We continually monitor over 30,000 real estate, editorial, public government data, social media and other sources to track planned growth activity in the small business sector. We apply Prime Growth Classification to that dataset to identify & segment prime growth firms, and then aggregate additional data points to determine key characteristics including their current job creation status, contact details and digital engagement.
Why this matters
Maintain a current view of planned expansion activity
The Prime Growth Briefing
Published every two weeks, The Prime Growth Briefing is a powerful dataset that identifies current expansion stage prime growth firms in the US, segments them based on their current growth priorities, and provides deep insight into their current status through 50 innovative data points.
View the data points included in the Briefing.
Why this matters
Traditional small business datasets and segmentation do not provide insight into development stages, prime growth firms, growth priorities, or growth timing6.
The quantity of expansion stage prime growth firms / establishments identified averages 18,000 annually. Monthly volume varies with sector conditions / activity.
Published every two weeks, the Prime Growth Briefing is the most current and accurate small business dataset available. We take extensive steps to ensure the veracity of the data we provide, and to present it to clients in a transparent manner. We use both internal and third-party validation tools, and all contact information is accompanied by validation status.
6.Waters, Steve. “Growth-based Classification vs. Traditional Small Business Segmentation”, SMB Intelligence, May 2018. Available online.
Effectively align your value to the growth priorities of owners
The Prime Growth Briefing groups expansion stage prime growth firms into six segments based on their current growth priorities.
Growth priorities refer to the big picture context of an owner’s current growth plans – the format and scale of growth they are currently working to accomplish. When you can determine current growth priorities you can align your solutions to support those priorities. This makes your solutions more relevant, effective, and compelling, and your company a more valuable part of the small business ecosystem.
Why this matters
Small business owners live in the moment7 and want solutions to current priorities8, not generalized value.
The six segments:
Expansion – Initial
Existing, expansion stage firms, currently planning to expand their single establishment firm into a small chain by adding a second establishment.
Expansion – Emerge
Existing, expansion stage, emerging small chains with 3-10 establishments, that are currently planning to expand by adding an establishment.
Expansion – Advance
Existing, expansion stage, advanced small chains with 11-20 establishments, that are currently planning to expand by adding an establishment.
Expansion – Velocity
Existing, expansion stage firms, that are currently planning rapid expansion by adding multiple new establishments at once.
Expansion – Relocate
Existing, expansion stage firms, that are currently planning to expand by relocating their firm or an establishment to a new location.
New, pre-revenue, pre-opening firms currently planning to launch their new firm, with an owner that owns another small business.
7.The average small business has less than a month of cash buffer days (meaning that if something happened that affected their revenue, they would have less than two months before they ran out of cash). 75% of owners have less than two months, 25% of owners have less than two weeks! JP Morgan Chase. “Cash is King: Flows, Balances and Buffer Days”, September 2016. Available online. 8.CEB. “The 9 Traits Small Business Owners Share”, September 2015. Available online.
The Prime Growth Briefing
The Briefing is published every two weeks and delivered in CSV format via email.
View the data points
The Prime Growth Approach
A nine-step model to implement the Prime Growth Briefing into your organization, delivered in PDF format.
Prime Growth Classification User Guide
A guide to understanding how and why to use Prime Growth Classification, delivered in PDF format.