Kathy is currently focusing on expanding her organization, and is seeking a suitable spot for her next shop. The Judder Fine Foods mission statement is to "provide their customers with the finest selected foodstuff, wines, and related needs in an unparalleled consumer environment (University of Phoenix, 2008). " Marketing research will aid Kathy in developing marketing tactics that will help grow her organization. Importance of Marketing Research Entrepreneurs Like Kathy "need Information In order to produce products and services that create value In the mind of the customer (Internet Center forManagement and Business Administration, 2010).

" Marketing research links the marketer, the competition, and the consumer by means of gathering information. Previous to expansion, it is important that Judder Fine Foods performs marketing research in order to acquire information regarding the competition and target market characteristics. When performed successfully, marketing research will minimize risk potential. The formal process of marketing research Is conducted In five steps.The steps are: define the problem, analyze the situation, acquire problem specific data, interpret the data, and solve the problem. Judder Fine Foods may appear to have no specific "problem" per SE, but the five steps can be applied In a general sense.

The company does wish to expand Into new markets and seize a potential opportunity, Application of the "Five Steps" Judder Fine Food's main marketing concern is their upcoming expansion. Kitty's fourth store will be opening in another area of the state, and so the consumer base that supports her other stores may not be present.Thus, step one and the definition of Kidder's problem is that the company must research and define the potential market that will support the new store. Failure in doing so may result in an unprofitable store. Step two of the marketing research process is analyzing the situation.

"A situation analysis is an informal study of what information is already available in the problem area. (William D. Perpetual, 2009). " Situation analysis often begins with quick research such as an internet search or informal conversation. Judder Fine Foods can perform quick and informal research regarding an acceptable location for a new branch.

This may include researching existing businesses and their clientele on the internet, or informal interactions with individuals who may have market insight into Kidder's expansion. Useful secondary data may be available citing the success or failure of market competitors in the target area(s). During stage three, Judder Fine Foods would attempt to acquire problem specific data regarding their expansion. During data collection, the researcher attempts to learn what customers think or how they will behave regarding a specific topic.

In relation to Judder Fine Foods, acquiring primary data from marketing research might include a survey of potential customers within potential expansion zones. After all, it would be unwise for Kathy to expand her business into an area where consumer demand would be lacking. Qualitative research utilizing surveys would provide a snapshot of potential customer perception of a gourmet food shop within their community. The survey would ask specific questions which gauge customer feelings toward a local gourmet food store and related products.Surveys can be administered via mail, email, or phone, and would capture data within a sample population.

An important step regarding Judder Fine Food's expansion, step four involves interpreting the data gathered during the data acquisition phase. During this stage, Kathy and her marketing team can use statistical analysis to draw meaning from the population sample. The data analyzed during this stage will express the customer perception of a gourmet food store and its products within a targeted area, and will help to determine the viability of opening another shop within a specific area.Step five in the marketing research process is simply referred to as solving the problem. "In the problem solution step, managers use the research results to make marketing decisions.

Some researchers, and some managers, are fascinated by the interesting tidbits of information that come from the research process. They are excited if the research reveals something they didn't know before. But if research researcher and the manager (William D. Perpetual, 2009). " It is during this stage where Kathy Judder and her company will make the final decision of where and whether to expand into a new store based on their marketing research.Importance of Competitive Intelligence and Analysis Competitive intelligence is the gathering and analysis of public information about competitors within a marketplace.

As opposed to industrial espionage which is not only unethical but also illegal, competitive intelligence is common practice, ethical, ND legal. Competitive intelligence is important in today's business world because it allows firms to anticipate the actions of their competitors, and provides a clear picture of potential opportunities and threats.Competitive intelligence is crucial when planning marketing strategies and tactics. Judder Fine Foods must consider the fact that other companies are entering the market of gourmet food shops.

Using competitive intelligence, Judder can keep a watch on competitor trends, so that they may stay ahead of the game in both service and products. Judder already has the advantages of an established store and a popular brand name, but Kathy and her marketing team must keep their momentum and always remain vigil in regards to the actions of competitors.