As we start 2024, it is essential to understand the competition in your industry and be well equipped for the rapidly changing market. Developing differentiated strategies can help your business be prepared for anything that the competition throws at you. As we like to see it, “competitive intelligence transcends the known cliche ‘know your enemy.’” (Forbes). It is bigger than just understanding who your competition is, it’s examining every aspect of how they operate in order to better anticipate their next move or be the one to make that move instead.
Competitive intelligence can be tricky and overwhelming. Luckily, we developed an easy-to-follow roadmap so you can get started as we jump headfirst into Q1.
1. Unlock Key Business Questions
Competitive intelligence can be very streamlined to make it appealing and easily implementable. Simplifying competitive intelligence needs to focus specifically on areas of your business where you can improve, and where you see your competitors outperforming you. First it is necessary to develop crucial questions to allow you to stay ahead. To formulate these questions, think about your business objectives for 2024 and define those benchmarks clearly. These questions do not have to be solved right away, but even writing them out or discussing them with collogues can help kick you off on a great start towards better understanding your competition.
2. Build an Informed Strategy to Connect the Dots
Take some time to create a synthesized strategy and conduct a competitive analysis for your organization, to identify key players, threats, trends, and disrupters in your industry. This does not have to be complicated by any means. However, while developing this strategy, make sure to collect the right selection of sources (exactly where we come in!) to ensure the strategy is well-rounded, holistic, and balanced. Use your key business questions that you have created to help you navigate and develop these strategic plans for 2024. Competitor analysis must be continuous; it never stops, and it is always evolving and monitoring any changes in your industry that may be prevalent.
3. Implement These New Developments
Competitive intelligence is an invaluable aspect of business and planning for these new developments in 2024 will make understanding competition that much easier. It is great to find these problem areas to deeply understand your competition, however, nothing will be changed unless the strategy is implemented within the business. This process requires taking it step by step, by always reevaluating your strategy. When mastering competitive intelligence, you want to make these steps an integral part of your daily operations by weaving any changes throughout the workplace to make CI a critical aspect of business. Set goals and make them attainable and easy to understand for all stakeholders involved.
4. Visualize Your Findings and Insights
When you have the results, it is important to use tools to graphically enhance your findings and make them easily interpretable. Discussing or even writing down ideas is great but visualizing them gets you one step closer to implementing these strategies. Even when collecting new data, putting that into graphs or templates that can showcase trends is helpful for understanding what your business needs to stay ahead. When you collect these insights and visualize them, you can critically analyze this information to create new questions and develop another business strategy, always slightly altering your plan of action along the way. Competitive intelligence is a long and continuous cycle as well as a tool that can always be used to well equip your business for success, especially heading fresh into the new year!
Where We Come In
At empatiX, competitive intelligence is an area of expertise, and we weave CI and our industry knowledge into all the work we do. We love helping our clients understand more about their competitors, by helping find sources and visualize findings.
Need to better understand your competition? We would love to chat! Reach out to us at email@example.com.