Evaluate each of the following approaches that a business firm could use to gather information about competition. For each approach, mark your feeling about its appropriateness using the following scale:
1. definitely not appropriate, 2. probably not appropriate, 3. undecided, 4. probably appropriate, and 5. definitely appropriate
The business firm should try to get useful information about competitors by:
_____ Careful study of trade journals
_____ Wiretapping the telephones of competitors
_____ Posing as a potential customer to competitors
_____ Getting loyal customers to put out a phone "request for proposal" soliciting competitors' bids
_____ Buying competitors' products and taking them apart
_____ Hiring management consultants who have worked for competitors
_____ Rewarding competitors' employees for useful "tips"
_____ Questioning competitors' customers and/or suppliers
_____ Buying and analyzing competitors' garbage
_____ Advertising and interviewing for nonexistent jobs
_____ Taking public tours of competitors' facilities
_____ Releasing false information about the company in order to confuse competitors.
_____ Questioning competitors' technical people at trade shows and conferences
_____ Hiring key people away from competitors
_____ Analyzing competitors' labor union contracts
_____ Having employees date persons who work for competitors
_____ Studying aerial photographs of competitors' facilities
After marking each of the preceding approaches, indicate on the discussion board for any 5, 4, 2, or 1, why you thought these acts were either appropriate or inappropriate.© BrainMass Inc. brainmass.com June 3, 2020, 6:29 pm ad1c9bdddf
Please see the attached file for a cleaner version of the answer.
( 5 ) Careful study of trade journals - this is very appropriate, if not the best solution. This information is available to the public, and anyone could view it.
( 1 ) Wiretapping the telephones of competitors - this is probably even illegal. This is very inappropriate, and if you are caught, you will probably be sued, and your credibility will be ruined
( 3 ) Posing as a potential customer to competitors - this is a grey area. There is an industry called corporate espionage, where there are actually employees that go gather info from other companies by posing as potential clients. Thought this is legal, it is considered to be quite "weasel like." This occurs often in large stores like grocery stores, WalMart... I was once in a grocery store in Russia and I wanted to take pictures, and out of no where, a security guard come over and told me in Russian that I was not able to take pictures. I assume he thought that I was a corporate spy.
( 2 ) Getting loyal customers to put out a phone "request for proposal" soliciting competitors' bids. It is very unprofessional to get your loyal clients involved in soliciting information about the competition. This might drive your customers away, and you might get a negative reputation.
This posting looks at several ways that a firm gathers information about their competition, and asks the reader to rate them on a scale of appropriateness. The posting gives an evaluation of the degree of what is appropriate, and provides strong rational behind the rating system.