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Marketing Resources: Company Overviews

Use this guide to find a variety of resources for marketing research: company and industry profiles, marketing plans, target markets, and customer demographics.

Public companies & private companies: what's the difference?

Public companies have shares of stock or other registered securities that are bought and sold by the public on one of the stock exchanges. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires publicly traded companies to file extensive information with them, which is available online.
 

Private companies are not traded on any stock exhange. Generally, they do not have to file any documents with the SEC, so it can be more challenging to find information on them.

Analyst reports

Check our guide for analyst and stock reports.

Competitors

Here is a separate guide for sources that identify major competitors within industries.

Company Profiles & Directories

To find profiles and other information about a company, such as its history, product lines, customer base, key suppliers, management team, strategy, and competitors, use the following resources. Keep in mind that for public companies, additional information can be found in the company's 10-K, the annual report all U.S. public companies have to file with the SEC.
 

Company Websites

A company or organization website can be an excellent source of information for locations, products and services, pricing, and product specifications. For public companies, they can include the company's mission statement as well as links to annual reports and 10-K's.  SEC filings, especially 10-K reports, may include products, markets, distribution channels, research and development, patent, and environmental safety information.

Note: Websites are not objective information sources, do not depend on them to tell the entire story about a company or organization.

ReferenceUSA Help

Business Librarians

Marianne Hageman (St. Paul)
mdhageman@stthomas.edu
651-962-5404

John Heintz (Mpls. & St. Paul)
jpheintz@stthomas.edu
651-962-4646

Andrea Koeppe (Mpls.)
andrea.koeppe@stthomas.edu
651-962-4647

During the COVID-19 Outbreak we will be working from home, but we are still available for research questions and consultations. You can email us to get in touch!