Planning and reporting in Competitive Intelligence (CI)

Hazel Butters/ April 6, 2021/ Competitive Intelligence

Competitive Intelligence (CI) professionals need to make a lot of decisions: where to focus research, which competitors to analyze, the ways to effectively collect primary and secondary CI data, how to verify data sources, and the best method to share their findings and serve the business. The presentation of insights adds an extra layer of decisions with briefings, matrices, worksheets, battlecards, bulletins, competitor profiles, impact analyses, daily updates, and score reports.

However they are shared, a core deliverable of CI is the usability of findings. Sales, Marketing, and Management are each time-pressed, are frequently looking particular information for a specific reason – and no-one has time to trawl through a 31-page document or a 50-slide PowerPoint. 

This is why our CI methodology includes steps to plan the scope, purpose, and presentation of insights.

It’s crucial to involve and speak with key stakeholders and users before CI work starts. There’s no point in producing a beautifully succinct report that just focuses on Competitor X if the new focus for the team this quarter is Competitor Y, or management is considering purchasing Competitor Z. And no-one is going to enthuse over a detailed competitor profile if they really wanted one simple scored graphic, or vice versa.

Another part of our methodology is project planning, with a detailed timeline which can be shared with stakeholders and contributors.  This is important as CI can involve a breadth of people across departments, roles, and geographies. Allowing individuals to understand their role and the impact of their involvement, help keeps them accountable – and the project on track.  

Finally, whatever the remit is in terms of the output and physical deliverables, we always prepare an executive briefing – this is delivered live (remotely, especially now), and then saved on-demand. So anyone can understand the key findings in the shortest amount of time possible.

Not sure where to start with CI, or want to hear more about our methodology and how it delivers value? Drop us a line and let’s talk.

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