The basic process of Competitive Intelligence
Your people may know their marketplace and their customers, but all that invaluable information could go to waste if you don’t collect it and collate it effectively. This is the basic process of Competitive Intelligence.
Octopus Intelligence looks at how Competitive Intelligence could be really useful to you.
- Does your company possess too much information on your market and competitors, but not enough time to determine what it all means?
- Do you want to invest in new markets or regions, but are unsure about the competitive environment?
- Are there new organisations entering or merging in your market or region? And you know very little about them?
- Do you struggle to compete with your rival’s moves? Sometimes being surprised by their actions, and do you find they often outperform you?
- When you lose out on a piece of business, do you understand why? Or are you relying on what your sale people tell you, or assuming it’s “who you know”?
If you can relate to some of the above, then competitive intelligence (CI) could benefit you.
Smaller companies may think that CI is out of their league. But it does not have to come through expensive or sophisticated process, using the latest software.
Any size organisation
Small companies can collect and use intelligence just as well as larger organisations.
As a CI adviser to companies like yours, we know that companies are committed to look at their competitors with Competitive Intelligence.
But that is not enough.
You should have your competitiveness as a strategic priority.
After all, it is highly likely that your rivals are utilising some sort of intelligence activity against you.
A structured approach to CI can be extremely rewarding for you. Give it the time to develop, and you do not expect 100% of the picture.
After all, if you need 100% of the information with 100% accuracy, you don’t need a CI consultant.
You need a historian.
What is clear is that, given the increasing competitiveness of your marketplace. The concept of CI will increase significantly over the next decade. What is also clear that if you do not get CI and make it a strategic priority, it will not be long before your rivals do.
Intrinsic part of your business
CI should be an intrinsic part of all levels of your business, from directors to trainees. HR to the reception desk, informing your business plan, mission statement and all areas of decision-making.
Used effectively, CI can prevent the unwelcome surprises sprung by the actions of the competition that no one expects. But could have seen coming if they were looking properly.
It is not difficult to set up a CI function of any size and budget.
How much is your firm willing to spend in time and money to reduce the risks . The one’s that an unwelcome surprise?