How to identify a gap in the market and turn it into a successful business, from someone who did just that!

- November 24, 2021 2 MIN READ

My ‘a-ha! moment’ came over lunch with friends. I was seven months pregnant and had to settle for ordering sparkling water due to a lack of non-alcoholic options, whilst my friends all enjoyed a spritz! writes Sophie Heatley founder of Yes You Can.

It was during that moment that I realised there wasn’t an option for me that would nurture social inclusivity and satisfy my cravings, and the idea for Yes You Can drinks was planted.

A few years in the making, we launched our drinks range back in September and haven’t looked back!

Here are my top three tips for those looking to identify a gap in the market

1. Make it personal

Through my study of psychology, I have learned that humans are tribal beings. We crave connection and belonging and for me, throughout my adolescent and young adulthood, having an alcoholic drink in hand has always given me that positive association. At that moment, it dawned on me that there needed to be a product that would both satisfy my cravings and that I would be comfortable drinking amongst friends. If I can’t (due to pregnancy), or don’t want to drink (for health or lifestyle reasons), why should I miss out on the fun and social inclusivity? When settling on a business idea, creating something that you were searching the market for just makes sense. Not only will this provide you with a unique insight into what you’re creating, but you’ll be able to approach every business decision with the lens of a customer.

2. Create a product you’d love

Over the years, I have grown to love the taste of a bittersweet spritz, a sharp, gingery dark and stormy and a fresh, dry G&T. When creating our drinks, we set about producing this exact range of complex and crafted flavours, without the alcohol. My top tip for identifying a gap in the market and seizing on it is to ensure you’re creating a product that you’d want, and ultimately buy. If you wouldn’t spend money on your product, why would anyone else?

3. Know your target market inside out

We are finding people are enjoying our drinks in a range of settings and in a range of ways – some substituting them in with the alcoholic equivalent to prolong their nights out, some going days and weeks (and beyond!) completely sober, and some even spiking them for a low alcohol alternative. We created our brand to give people a choice, to take ownership of how, when and why they drink and to help normalise mindful drinking, which is something I was craving myself. When looking at building a business idea, it’s crucial to know who your target market is, what drives them to spend, where they shop and what they’re looking for, and if you happen to be one of them; this is all made far easier!

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