They were intent on finding a rural community with a large college population and a warm climate so they could sell a lot of ice cream. To identify the possibilities, they did what they’ve come to describe as a “manual cross-correlation analysis,” putting a U.S. almanac on one side of the table and a guide to American colleges on the other. They generated a list of about ten towns that met the criteria, but quickly discovered that most of them already had a homemade ice cream shop.
They eventually decided on Saratoga Springs, the town Ben had lived in for about a year when he went to Skidmore College. It wasn’t as warm as they had hoped for, but it had a race track and a strong summer tourist business. And it didn’t have a homemade ice cream parlor. They moved to Saratoga in May of 1977, and found a great apartment right on Saratoga Lake.–Ben and Jerry’s: The Inside Scoop Ch. 2
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The five competitive forces that shape strategy
(Michael Porter, Harvard Business Review)