If you are in business, you’re competing, and your best deal will sooner or later be beaten, which will significantly reduce your level of income. Business is a game of chess: predict the opponent's next move or lose! Predict it to get a strong weapon to outperform the competitor!
In this article, Lucy Adams, a blogger from website where you can order customized papers, will share her vision of competitive intelligence and its fundamental differences from the emotional intelligence (IQ).
image credit: www.static.pexels.com
Let’s start with the definition:
Competitive intelligence is the systematic monitoring of the actions of your competitors to determine their current and possible future activities.
By gathering this information, you’re improving the quality of your actions, both strategically and tactically, and better understand your competitive position on the market.
There are five main categories of information that the competitive intelligence focuses on:
- Strategy evaluation. What is the competitor’s strategy?
- Current activity. What is your competitor doing at the moment?
- The attitude towards the competitor’s goods and services on the market. How is your competitor perceived by its clients?
- Competitor’s opportunities. What are current and possible future advantages of your competitor?
- Market prospects. In which direction does the market move and what are the prospects of your competitor?
Gather all possible information on these five issues to adjust your actions the best way possible.
Well, no one will give you the right information right here and now, but you can get at least some indirect data that can be even more important if you know how to analyze it.
There are three main information sources that you can use when gathering information:
- Competitor’s products and open information sources. Browse all the brochures and other promotional materials; buy the competitor’s products and analyze them; visit the competitor's website; read all sorts of reports, including shareholders’ reports, etc.
- Competitor’s clients. Get feedback on the products and services. Ask customers why they buy goods from the competitor, and why the competitor’s services are better than yours. Record positive and negative customer feedback. Read customers’ blogs.
- Suppliers. Visit exhibitions and presentations of the competitor’s providers to understand the main points of their collaboration. Sign up for the mailing list of the main provider.
Image Credit: www.maxpixel.freegreatpicture.com
As soon as you start gathering info, you may feel a bit confused for the reason you won’t know what to do with this data. That’s why you’ll need a competitive strategy. There are four main components:
- Planning. Decide what you need and why. What information and why should you know? What do you already know? How much will it cost to get important information? What will you do with the information when you get it?
- Information gathering. Where will you look for the needed data? Will you delegate this task to someone else? Will you use some external services or specialized software? How can you be sure that you don’t break the law?
- Analysis. Determine the way you will use gathered info. What does your company do better? What can you do in a different way? What range of strategic actions will the competitor take? What will be your competitor’s reaction to new trends and tendencies?
- Communication. What information will you share with your team right now/in the future? Who needs this information now/in the future? Where will you store the information? What can you learn from your experience?
Competitive intelligence is largely based on predictions and guesses. You can never know what your competitors think, but you can always notice trends and make the right conclusions.
Like any other intelligence, competitive intelligence can be developed with the theory, practice, and experience. Gather information, analyze it down to the smallest detail, and business success won’t be long in coming!
Lucy Adams is a blogger and essay writer from BuzzEssay. She’s a diligent author who never breaks deadlines. Lucy is open to all sorts of new things, so feel free to supply her with innovative ideas. Don’t miss the chance to start a mutually beneficial collaboration. By the way, blog posts are free!