So, All firms must have a competitive monitoring plan to keep up with the many changes and advancements in the business landscape. Though competition analysis covers many topics, it is especially important to understand your competitors’ business and product advancements.
Logically, every firm has an effective monitoring plan in a world where competition is an innate and inherent component of a corporation. Here are some examples of how competition monitoring might benefit a firm. This essay will discuss competitive monitoring, why it’s necessary, how to do it, and some other crucial topics. By the conclusion, you’ll have a firm grasp on how and why you should be keeping tabs on your competitors. Let’s get started.
What is competitive monitoring?
Competitive monitoring is the continual tracking of your competitors and the market and business environment to collect data on the competition, competitive products and services, and market trends. Competitive monitoring is typically used to establish your market position. Still, it is a technique that may be utilised to make various strategic business decisions.
When information gathered during competition monitoring is reviewed and deemed relevant and actionable, it is called competitive intelligence. Competitive intelligence can (and should) be the primary basis for making strategic and tactical decisions that provide your firm with a competitive advantage.
This competitive intelligence gleaned by competitive monitoring can also be utilised to conduct a competitive intelligence analysis (or competitive analysis), which can provide you with a thorough insight into a competitor’s products, services, value proposition, capabilities, and shortcomings.
Why is Competitive monitoring vital?
Competitive monitoring is essential for small, medium, and large firms. As previously said, data analysis allows firms to understand their competitors’ products, pricing, marketing, and sales techniques, which can assist inform their business strategy. In addition, regular competitive monitoring has several advantages, including:
1. Business information that is relevant and timely – Intelligence is useless if it is not convenient. To be actionable, the intellect must be gathered before your competitor’s act, which is why regular competition monitoring is critical.
2. Improved knowledge of market developments and potential threats – Competitive monitoring provides preliminary knowledge about market developments and potential threats, allowing an organisation to be prepared for competitors’ moves, formulate a counter-strategy, discover untapped market avenues, and avoid or minimise potential losses.
3. Increased business responsiveness – Business responsiveness may be tested by asking a simple question: “How long does it take your company to respond to a business question?” “When did our competition start delivering this particular feature?” for example. However, this is a reactionary attitude. The question with ordinary competitive intelligence would be, “We know our opponent is preparing to offer this unique feature; what can we do to offset this move?”
What should you keep an eye on?
Competitive monitoring will give you an advantage over competitors, but only if you know what to monitor. So what specific data points should you be looking for? Here’s the solution:
1. Competitors’ websites
A competitor’s website is a real gold mine of information regarding competitive monitoring. The intelligence gathered from rivals’ websites has a wealth of knowledge to provide insights into their core investment areas, marketing strategy, product strategy, sales strategy, and overall business growth. You can also learn about their executives, investors, news, events, products, price and packaging, thought leadership, and other topics that will provide you with a competitive advantage.
Knowing the company’s main staff, in particular, can assist you in establishing what your competitors truly look like, i.e. the actual people driving their business.
When your sales staff is on the phone with a potential customer, understanding how your rival is positioning themselves and their prices and features provides them with the actionable knowledge they need to strike a competitive offer.
2. Media mentions
News mentions are an important aspect of competitive monitoring since understanding what is being said about your competitors in the media can provide valuable insights into their operations. News mentions can indicate market positioning, popularity, direction, C-suite changes, and product changes, all of which might inform your business strategy. The press release page is a strong sign of what they want current and potential consumers to care about and is thus a crucial data point to track. Similarly, being aware of your competitor’s honours and recognitions is another method to appreciate their skills.
It is thus a source of data that can be used to closely monitor their company’s current and future operations and how they interact with their customers/clients. This can assist you in determining the many components of your overall business plan and making your next move with informed confidence.
3. Review Websites
Another source of information you should watch is review websites like Reputedfirms. In addition to assessing your customer happiness, understanding what your competitors’ customers think of their products and services is beneficial. This can give you significant insights into your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, which you can utilise to better your product or service.
Review sites can also disclose what past or current employees say about a company. Whether good or poor, your sales teams can utilise this knowledge as ammo to position your company in front of clients by portraying their faults as your strengths. Recruitment teams can also use it to better place your company’s culture before prospective workers. Finally, recruitment teams can also use it to better position your company’s culture before future workers.
4. Marketing Emails
What could be better than having your competition tell you what’s going on at their company? Subscribing to your competitors’ marketing emails ensures that you have a regular flow of actionable information about the type of content they’re publishing, events they intend to attend or sponsor, news mentions, and upcoming webinars that may be followed to acquire additional insights.
5. Job Advertisements
The recruiting practises of your competitors might reveal a lot about what their firm is currently working on. Monitoring the posting’s location, the number of positions, roles, and the length of time the posting has been live might reveal clues into your competitor’s direction, growth, and future strategic intentions. Look for trends in job posting activity. For example, suppose you notice increased job postings for product and sales-related tasks in a specific location. In that case, your competition is likely creating and about to launch a new product.
How should you keep track of your competitors?
When it comes to doing competitive monitoring and gathering competitive intelligence, the internet is your number one source of information. However, suppose you try to gather competitive intelligence on your competitors and the market manually. In that case, you’ll quickly become lost in a sea of information and overwhelmed by the number of issues it presents.
Even if you can filter out some information through thorough internet research, the procedure is time-consuming. Moreover, how will you assure the accuracy and completeness of your data? Not everything on the internet is true or reliable, and you could end up with out-of-date information, waste time studying incorrect data, or even lose out on new enterprises seeking to enter your market.
How would you know if you had overlooked something?
For these reasons, you require to market and competitive intelligence tools or platforms, such as Reputedfirms, that can identify your competitors, collect reliable data, and then analyse and visualise that information to assist you in making informed, actionable decisions about refining your business strategies.
A company should spend no more than 5% of its time monitoring the competition, which is what a smart and efficient platform like Reputedfirms does.
Competitive monitoring is only the first step in making your firm more competitively intelligent. Make sure you use the intelligence you collect to its maximum potential, such as creating competitive analyses, sharing it with key stakeholders, including it in sales enablement and marketing collateral, and employing other methods to turn it into action. I hope this blog post has emptied some darkness around the topic of competitive monitoring and will assist you in charting your organisation’s path to success.