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Competitive Intelligence and Analysis in Modern-Day Marketing

What is competitive intelligence? What is the importance of competitive intelligence and analysis in modern-day marketing? How can a company's marketing organization ensure that it is able to identify newly emerging competitors in time to plan and execute an effective marketing strategy in response to these competitors?

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1. What is competitive intelligence?
Competitive intelligence (CI) is the process of discovering, analyzing and using intelligence from publicly available, non-proprietary information sources for the purpose of becoming more competitive.
How is CI different from spying? Competitive intelligence is not about snooping on competitors. It's about analyzing information in a continuous process that is tightly linked to your strategic planning. It is your company's circulatory system for knowledge. That knowledge encompasses not only competitors but technology, legal and regulatory changes, suppliers, materials, industry and market trends, and political and economic changes.
Competitive intelligence is all about analyzing relevant business environment information on an ongoing basis. It includes keeping an eye on:
 Competitors
 Technology
 Legal and regulatory changes
 Suppliers
 Materials
 Industry and market trends
 Political and economic changes
Plan to cover five steps when undertaking a competitive intelligence program:
1. Define the information you need, including when and why you need it.
2. Collect and organize the right data.
3. Study the data to find trends that will result in recommendations for specific action.
4. Report the information to people in your company who need it to make strategic business decisions.
5. Measure the impact of the intelligence you provided and continue to refine the process. http://strategis.ic.gc.ca/epic/internet/inee-ef.nsf/en/h_ee00506e.html
There are three ways to find information:
1. Gather it directly from your competitors, customers, suppliers and colleagues ...

Solution Summary

This solution examines the elements/the importance of competitive intelligence, steps for undertaking a competetive intelligence program,and information sources, strategy and management for these programs in the attached Word document.