Businesses need to be sure they cover all sources of competitive intelligence insights. However, they might be missing a key source: industry conferences.
Adding conference coverage to a traditional competitive intelligence program offers numerous advantages, including:
1. Unique Insights – Conferences showcase the latest industry trends, innovations, and emerging technologies. Organizations can gather real-time, up-to-date insights that may not be readily available through more traditional competitive intelligence channels. Often, companies are more open about what they have in development at industry conferences, as they want to attract potential customers and partners. For example, pharma companies are often hesitant to publicly reveal much about their upcoming products and what they’re innovating. However, a pharma company might show some of its R&D projects at an industry conference to excite people.
2. Competitor Observation – Conferences bring together many different industry players, providing a unique opportunity to observe the activities, strategies, product offerings, and presentations of multiple companies at once. By attending competitor sessions, analyzing their presentations, and interacting with their representatives, organizations can gain valuable firsthand knowledge about their strengths, weaknesses, marketing strategies, and plans for the future.
3. Ideas for Innovations – The competitive insights gathered at conferences can serve as a source of inspiration within the receiving company. Exposure to cutting-edge technologies and ideas, competitive insights, and thought-provoking sessions can unlock creativity and novel ideas. Conference intelligence regularly leads companies to explore new product and innovation avenues.
4. Unlocking Collaboration and Partnership Opportunities – Knowing what companies in the industry are up to not strengthens competitive strategy. However, it can also give ideas of industry players whose work may nicely complement a company’s own output. Then, the company could suggest a partnership or other mutually beneficial collaboration.
5. A More Complete View of the Sector – Conferences bring together a diverse range of stakeholders from across the industry. Competitors, suppliers, customers, and industry influencers come together and share what they see in the sector and what they’re working on. Attending different sessions, workshops, and panels helps CI practitioners can a comprehensive understanding of the industry landscape, identify emerging trends, and assess the overall market direction (based on the input of people on different sides of the industry). This broader perspective helps inform more robust competitive and R&D strategies.
6. Nuanced Competitive Insights – If the conference or industry event has an in-person component, it offers the possibility of face-to-face interactions with industry experts, analysts, customers, and potential clients. These interactions provide an opportunity to gather qualitative intelligence, understand customer preferences, receive direct feedback, and gain deeper insights into market dynamics. Such detailed information is usually difficult to obtain through remote research or data analysis.
By integrating conference coverage with competitive intelligence programs, organizations can capitalize on these unique benefits to gain a competitive edge, inform R&D projects, spot emerging opportunities and understand where the market is going, mitigate risks, and make informed strategic decisions.
Evalueserve offers a Conference Coverage module of our AI-powered CI platform, Insightsfirst. Insightsfirst: Conference Intelligence is a one-stop platform that combines AI and machine learning with domain experts on the ground, providing the highest quality of insights, curation, and analysis. Learn more about the solution and request a demo here.