If you already understand the value of competitive intelligence, then you probably also understand the frustration of watching colleagues dismiss or flat out ignore actionable information that your business spent time and money collecting. There are many reasons people overlook competitive intelligence as a resource, but fortunately, you can plan to avoid the most prominent hurdles by following these four steps to foster widespread interest in your intelligence process:
- Involve people in the set-up process: Before your competitive intelligence process goes live, you have a valuable opportunity to get potential users onboard. Reach out to the various teams or departments that use competitive intelligence and find out what they’re interested in learning. For instance, your marketing department may have very different information goals than your product development team. Surveys and one-on-one conversations with stakeholders across the company will paint a clear picture of what your intelligence process needs to capture, making it more effective from day one. Moreover, users who are asked for input in the set-up process are more likely to take an interest in the final product—if only to see how their input is used.
- Provide customized reports: Once your new competitive intelligence system is up and running, how you choose to organize and distribute the information it collects can have a major effect on how well its received. Email briefings are a great tool for ensuring that users are seeing new information as it’s captured. Customized briefings are even better—by filtering information based on the team or employee receiving it, you increase the likelihood that users will find relevant, actionable news.
- Identify ‘power’ users: After you’ve had a chance to see your competitive intelligence system in action, it’s time to home in on your core user group. By identifying your most active users, you can learn what’s working for them and how to keep them happy long term. You also have a chance to reach out to low-interest users to find out what aspects of your system are failing them.
- Create a feedback mechanism: Even a carefully planned competitive intelligence process will require tweaks and updates from time to time. To that end, be sure to provide users with an easy-to-use feedback channel. When there’s a problem or the potential for improvement, users should be able to alert the process manager immediately, without having to track down contact information or submit an IT service request. The easier it is for users to make suggestions (and complaints), the more comprehensive and up-to-date your competitive intelligence system will be in the long run.
To find out how CI Radar can help you build an inclusive competitive intelligence process, contact us today for more information