The goal of a competitive intelligence (CI) program isn’t to create a library of reports sitting on the shelf; it’s to boost company profits. That may mean obtaining highly targeted nuggets of information that can be acted upon profitably, rather than voluminous data. Sometimes less is more.
Here’s some sensible advice from Christopher Dalley at Primary Intelligence Inc.: Ask yourself whether your CI program is delivering:
Will this intelligence create new revenue opportunities?
Will we take away sales from the competition?
Will our existing accounts stay longer and be more profitable?
Can we be more efficient or learn best practices?
Are there better ways to manage our processes?
How easily will we be able to act on the data?
Finally, Dalley notes that “reactive CI” doesn’t constitute a useful CI program. (See my post on forward-looking, anticipatory intelligence.)