Providing resources for communities and entrepreneurs to create and retain jobs in Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan & Emmet Counties.


As you know, there are many choices when it comes to research. We’ve tried to take some of the guess work out of the process by providing our “best choices” in 10 different business planning and research categories. All are FREE.

Each tool included has been researched by the MSU Business Library and/or recommended by Northern Lakes Economic Alliance Business Counseling Team. Look for additional tools to be added and we appreciate your feedback so we can update/add/delete to make the page more useful.

Categories Include: (scroll down for content)

Business Plans Competitor Information Customer Profiles & Demographics
Financial Data Sources of Capital Market Research
Industry Analysis Trade Assoc. & Trade Shows Local Economic Data
Michigan Resources    

Business Plans

Competitor Information

Identifying and learning about competitors in small communities can be difficult and may require a great deal of primary research (i.e. talking directly to people in the local business community). The secondary sources listed here are a good place to start:

Customer Profiles and Demographics

  • American FactFinder-Population, housing, economic and geographic data from the U.S. Census Bureau

Financial Data

  • BizMiner-Reports on more than 16,000 lines of business in national and local markets

Sources of Capital

Market Research

Industry Analysis

  • Economic Census-U.S. Census Bureau's economic profiler of U.S. national and local economies

Trade Associations and Trade Shows

Local Economic Data

Michigan Resources