Effective Competitive Intelligence

There was an event I was unfortunately unable to attend that I recently received some collateral from afterwards. It was on a subject that interests me partly because I myself often get paid for providing a type of service in this arena to salesteams, namely competitive intel.

My analysis on this area stems from dozens of separate projects undertaken since 99. I’ve even documented my experiences here, specific to selling new products, in my free eBook.

One item that was news to me, is that there is a Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals, and it appears that they endorse a seven step framework for competitor intel.  Here’s a quick summary:

  1. choose the ‘right’ competition (it may not always be obvious)
  2. distinguish between the nice-to-have and need-to-know
  3. focus on the environment around which you and your customers fit
  4. determine the inference and action sought
  5. consider the entire process, from collection to analysis
  6. and also understand what storage needs and share mechanisms you need
  7. know where you stand on the ethics of your project

And in case you need reminding why doing all this is important, practitioners are keen to point out that “inattention to competitive intelligence in the sales process leads to price cutting”.

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