Competitive Intelligence (CI) is the action of defining, gathering, analyzing, and distributing intelligence about the environment in which your business functions to gain a competitive advantage. However, this process can not only be difficult but time-consuming as well without the proper tools and assistance at your disposal.
When competitive intelligence tools are used effectively, teams see about a 70% reduction in time spent searching for information. This means they can focus on making business impacts from the data.
Competitive Intelligence solutions can bring your CI efforts to a whole new level with AI, CRM Integration, and Competitive tracking, among other things.
In this blog, we’ll walk you through how a Competitive Intelligence Solution can make your job easier.
Eliminate Repetitive Tasks
Artificial Intelligence can help you gather knowledge for your competitive research. AI-Driven Competitive Intelligence solutions find the best competitive intelligence sources for research and knowledge gathering and compile them into a single dashboard for easy access.
As AI is collecting information that could be beneficial, it is also sorting and filtering through the data to exclude all the noise and unnecessary data that could consume too much of your time. AI solutions focus on finding the information and presenting the data that is most relevant to you and your business function.
The best AI-Driven competitive intelligence solutions will allow better drill-downs into collected information and provide quick glances like auto-generated summaries and key insights from each source for the user’s convenience. These summaries will allow users to spend less time reading an entire article or source, and more time determining what actions to take on the data presented.
Data visualization is a key component of any AI-powered competitive intelligence solution. AI should visualize the impactful trends found in the collected data to show you where things in your industry are headed and help you understand how to respond.
One-Stop-Shop for Knowledge
Using a CI Solution as a centralized knowledge repository allows users to reference data in meetings with their teams and organization and provide access to any user to also reference the data, without having to search through their email or another communication tool to find old messages.
A CI Solution brings in information from public sources, pulls information from premium tools you have, and integrates information from business intelligence tools your company or organization is already using. It should provide workbench capabilities, so all your relevant insights are in one location for analysis. This helps you make better decisions with comprehensive data rather than scattered pieces.
Competitive Intelligence Solutions should also help streamline communication and knowledge-sharing efforts. A comprehensive CI solution offers new levels of accessibility for any team in your organization, due to the understanding that there are large numbers of stakeholders that require different levels and types of data.
A CI solution can provide easier access to sharing, commenting, and tagging within the platform, so information can be found and accessed by anyone in the organization that may need it. A CI solution should push information out to teams in forms that are accessible, familiar, and relevant to their business function, such as battle cards for sales teams, SWOT analysis or charts for product teams, and newsletters for executives.
Comprehensive coverage can help enable sales, marketing, and product teams in their efforts to navigate and lead their competitive industries and stay ahead of what other organizations are contributing to the sector.
A competitive intelligence solution should give a holistic view of what moves competitors are making, trends in the marketing, intel to suppliers & key accounts, and provide deeper insights at organizational, product, sales, and marketing levels to allow different business teams to function effectively in combating competitor movements.
Not only should your chosen competitive intelligence solution track what your competitors are doing, but it should also track how your partners and vendors are doing, and their competitors so your teams are able to anticipate any big shifts in a vendor or partner’s industry.
Tracking your vendors and their competitors helps you ensure you are getting the best deals for the services or products you are using from them. Not only do you need to monitor deals and prices but should use your CI solution to monitor new partnerships, and brand or product hype of your vendors and partners.
Another key, and beneficial, feature that your competitive intelligence solution should have is resource curation. Your CI solution should provide additional resources, outside of just research and reports, such as presentation development, battle cards for sales teams, personalized subscriptions or notifications, and competitor profile building.
Battle cards can enable your sales team to win more deals by providing them objection handling and key insights or important information about competitor products or services.
Personalized notifications are useful so you can stay updated with trending news, key insights, or important shifts with competitors or in your industry, market, or sector, all sent directly to your inbox. This is particularly helpful because the average insights team is 3-5 people that serve 500+ employees. When using a centralized competitive intelligence platform, insights teams have reported seeing a 4x increase in revenue because they are able to track comprehensive sources that impact their market like competitors, markets, and key accounts.
Competitor benchmarking is an important feature of a CI solution, so your teams can easily reference all information about a competitor and determine a better strategy to combat the movements of that competitor. It is a great organizational feature of competitive intelligence solutions.
Presentation Development can be useful as well—this can help you combine the insights gathered by AI and your own field intel into presentations relevant to the project, product, or service you’re focused on. AI may auto-generate these for your convenience and allow you to edit or update the presentation with better-suited information or the insights you are trying to highlight.
Competitive intelligence is an integral part of any organization, and as we dive into the future of CI, ensuring your team has the right tools for success is an important piece of the puzzle. Implementing a competitive intelligence solution into your business’s product, marketing, sales, and other teams will assist them in strategizing how to combat the competition and remain competitive in ever-changing markets.