Intelligent Keys to a
Competitive Analysis_

Firms today face constant pressure to maintain sustainable growth, stay ahead of their competitors, and present superior customer-centric products. It is impossible for any firm to adequately survive, without developing a thorough market perspective. Competitive intelligence is a tool for gaining market insight. It can have a far-reaching strategic impact on a firm’s operations strategy and business process management.

Competitive intelligence

Competitive intelligence is required to conduct a thorough competitive analysis. A competitive analysis is a key task for managers and is used to assess the strengths and weaknesses of current and potential competitors, understand market structure, and solidify defenses against potential competitive incursions.

Competitive intelligence is a multi-disciplinary function affecting sales, marketing, product development, operations strategy, and product re-engineering.

Competitive analysis also serves to improve business processes and plan competitive attacks and response strategies. It is a multi-disciplinary function affecting sales, marketing, product development, operations strategy, and product re-engineering. It requires diverse, objective, and timely information spanning these departments.

Researching product descriptions, expert reviews, blogs, customer reviews, employee testimonials, investor reports, and media news are viable sources for collecting information salient to the competitive analysis process. These internet-based sources are considered valuable forms of secondary competitive intelligence.

Current primary intelligence, coupled with thorough secondary research provides the basis for a thorough competitive analysis.

Market insights

Primary competitive intelligence includes market insights collected directly from a firm’s most important external stakeholders: its customers, clients, partners, and even its competitors. Primary intelligence collected from these sources provides invaluable information on what constitutes success for your external stakeholders. It can provide insight into how to exceed expectations and avoid customer pains.

Firms with a formal process to persistently collect primary intelligence use the insight to drive customer-centric marketing strategies, product development, and client success strategies. Based on its customer-centric nature, primary intelligence can help solidify or establish a firm’s value propositions and competitive advantages.

Current primary intelligence, coupled with thorough secondary research provides the basis for a thorough competitive analysis.

Author section

STEPHANIE GREY

Stephanie Grey is a Digital Marketing Manager overseeing search marketing for Adapt Intelligence. She has spent eight years developing and implementing campaigns in management consulting and technology services, and consultants with Charlotte small businesses on ways to attract more customers online.

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