Why competitive intelligence is important even when you have access to a database?
This article asks why competitive intelligence is important even when you have access to a database. You know when you get access to a major database platform and think it looks impressive. So much data at your fingertips. And it’s easy to search for stuff, and you have every revenue figure at your fingertips. Even some of them outside the global 500. But then you think, yeah, but? There’s got to be more to competitive analysis than published reports and lots of data.

You buy the latest global report on your industry sector. 140 pages of great information. You sit down and read it. And you feel more informed. But again, you think, yeah, but?

Yeah, but what about my company?
How is this information going to affect me?
What are my competitors going to do?
How can I use this information to grow?
Then you realise that your competitors have also bought the report, so where’s that advantage? All your competitors have the same, primarily nice-to-know information but nothing that will make a difference and nothing that will increase your competitive edge.

So you choose one of the excellent competitive intelligence software solutions to monitor your competitors. Super until you start using it and realise you have a lot of work to do.

Warning: You are suffering from hindsight overload!
Guess what? You will not be surprised that the missing piece of the equation is insight. Insight brought to you by competitive intelligence. Understand what your competitors and markets are doing today. Not last week or last year.

Ask yourself a question. Looking back 12 months, are you still doing as well or as poorly? Are you doing and saying the same things? No? So why do so many think their competitors will be doing the same things?

Competitive intelligence is the finding & critical analysis of information to make sense of what’s happening & why. Predict what’s going to happen & give the options to control the outcome. The insight to create more certainty & competitive advantage.

Bespoke and specific questions
Competitive intelligence is based on a solid foundation of bespoke, specific questions you need answering. That’s the questions you need to know, not the generic (often wrong) questions in published reports. Of course, you may strike lucky, and the report answers the questions you need. And the report was just written the week before.

Competitive intelligence is important because the process gives you insight into how your competitors conduct business, and it reveals all the industry assumptions and questions them. Helping you understand your competition and its strategies and making decisions and actions based on foresight and insight rather than just gut feelings or industry experience.

This information can help you adjust your own strategy to stay ahead of the competition. Also, it can assist you in identifying new opportunities in the market. By understanding what your competitors are doing, you can identify areas where you may be able to gain a competitive advantage. Competitive intelligence is essential for all businesses because it protects them from potential threats from your competitors. The insight and foresight from using competitive intelligence also tell you how your competitors plan to do business. Based on recent, evidence-based insight rather than outdated assumptions. And then there are the options you have for you to be able to decide to do something or, indeed, nothing about it.

Mergers and Acquisitions
Competitive intelligence is powerful as it allows you to assist your mergers and acquisitions. And if done correctly, know about any M&A activity in your markets before they happen. You can see and then shift strategies to counter the changing realities.

However, it’s not market research. Competitive intelligence is the ability to out-think, outmanoeuvre and outperform adversaries by seeing the big picture and creating long-range forecasts and predictions.

You will experience less strategic surprise and see the signals of a competitor about to make a particular move. Shining a light into potential blind spots. You may not see everything, but if you are not using competitive intelligence, then you are not looking. So you have no chance.

Competitive intelligence and its insight provide a unique source of unbiased news and analysis. Encourages a competitive culture in the organisation using increased competitor awareness. Above all, Competitive intelligence helps minimise uncertainty and increase competitive advantage.

Old intelligence
Would an army go into battle with old technology and three-year-old military intelligence? Well, other than Russia, of course, but that’s a different and sombre story.

Like what’s happening in Ukraine at the moment. Poor insight through the lack of foresight and intelligence has resulted in Russia not being as successful as it should be. So Russian forces are focusing their efforts on the strategically insignificant area of Bakhmut. But Putin needs to be seen to win something. And this happens to a lesser extent in business. Profits for shareholders at the expense of an arbitrary 20% of an experienced workforce show the door to make it look like the CEO is driving the promised returns.

More importantly, the guys in the trenches suffer from their leaders’ lack of insight. I doubt a modern army will order the latest country report written 18 months ago, two weeks before going into battle. And it doesn’t matter how prestigious the logo on the front of the report is. If it’s historical, it’s still outdated and not as good as fresh insight. So why is it acceptable for a business to do this?

Without insight from competitive intelligence, you will lose more than you win. And you won’t know when you have lost and why you have lost.

Why competitive intelligence is important even when you have access to a database?
In conclusion, there must be more to competitive analysis than old reports and lots of data. And the is and its insight from using competitive intelligence. A database can be a powerful and valuable tool, and published reports can also be helpful. But you will not enhance your competitive advantage anytime soon without competitive intelligence-based insight. You may pass an exam, but the others in the room are also sitting it, and the real test is in the next classroom. In a classroom, you may not know it even exists.

We are Octopus, and we’re all about your real competitive advantage.
We are the global bespoke people-powered global competitive intelligence company creating the insight you can do something with.


Author's Bio: 

| By Octopus competitive intelligence
| We’re all about your real competitive advantage
| Creating insight you can do something with


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