You may think you have your competition beat, but you may be missing something important that will give you a large advantage.
Software and other technologies give us the opportunity to gain loads of data. However, many of us don’t use that data to its full potential. Keep reading to find out how you can dominate your competitors by developing an AI-powered competitive intelligence (CI) strategy with the data you have.
Key Highlights from How to Build a Competitive Intelligence Strategy
6 Steps To Build Your CI Strategy
1. Identify your competitors.
The first competitors that come to mind may be your direct competitors, which are understandably the most prevalent on your radar. But, it is also important to widen your scope and consider indirect and aspirational competitors, as well as competitors by vertical or industry. The further you analyze your competitors, the better off you will be!
2. Map your competitor’s digital footprints.
It is time to bring your professional stalking skills to the table. Digital footprints can include a company’s website, social media pages, and any other form of online presence. Therefore, you should closely analyze each of these. Scroll through webpages, forums, and more to track promotions, upcoming announcements, and other information that may keep you updated on what your competitors are doing.
3. Track your competitors every move.
AI plays four roles in this step:
- Capturing data at scale in real time: Hours of labor use to be put into collecting and analyzing data. Now, AI can do it all for you.
- Capturing and identifying meaningful changes: AI can help you filter out irrelevant data (such as a font color change on a competitor’s website) and focus on things that will actually give you an advantage.
- Structuring data: With the surplus of data you have, AI can automatically organize it in a way that allows you to interpret the data efficiently. In turn, this will help you develop an accurate analysis of your results.
- Organizing offline data: There is a lot of information online; however, there is still data to be collected offline from sales or customer service teams. Invest in AI to input this information. The better the AI, the more trends it will find within the data.
4. Analyze and identify trends.
It is time to turn all that data we have collected into insights that we can act upon. There are three layers to this analysis:
- Determining whether a data point is useful.
- Determining how important it truly is. Will it change the competitive environment?
- Determining the type of strategy that can be deduced. What does it all mean?
AI can help address all three of those prompts. Due to its ability to structure, identify, and organize data, you can make quality decisions without wasting any time.
5. Share competitive intelligence and drive action.
It is time to utilize your newly found insights and apply them to your business strategy. There are five types of CI deliverables:
- Up-to-date resources: Includes resources that are always up-to-date on your competitor’s position.
- Updates on key changes: Produce and distribute newsletters to keep your company aware of changes.
- Urgent updates/announcements: Keep track of competitor’s new product releases and other long-term information you can use to your advantage.
- Long-term analysis of data points: This analysis can help you generate long-term plans and product investments for your company.
Remember, AI can monitor all of these elements for you.
6. Measure results.
This may be the most important step. If all our efforts are not yielding the results we want, then we are wasting our time. Here are some things to measure:
- Survey stakeholders
- Customer retention and happiness
Want to hear the best part? There are plenty of other results to analyze… and you don’t have to pick just one. You can study a combination of these metrics to get a widespread view of your competitive efforts.
Want To Learn More About What AI Can Do For You?
These insights came from How To Build A Competitive Intelligence Strategy, an AI Academy for Marketers course presented by Ellie Mirman, CMO of Mulberry.
AI Academy for Marketers is our members-only online education platform and community. The Academy features dozens of on-demand courses and certifications taught by leading AI and marketing experts.
The courses are complemented by additional exclusive content, including:
- Live monthly Ask Me Anything sessions with instructors.
- The Answering AI series of quick-take videos that provides simple answers to common AI questions.
- Keynote presentations from the Marketing AI Conference (MAICON).
- AI Tech Showcase product demos from leading AI-powered vendors.
Individual and team licenses are available. Discounts are offered for students, educators and nonprofits.
Ready to discover these and other important AI concepts? Sign up for the AI Academy below.
Bethany is an intern for Ready North and Marketing Artificial Intelligence Institute. She is a student at Mount Union.