I was interviewed by Adam Sutton of MarketingSherpa, and in the spirit of cooperative intelligence I am sharing some highlights from each of the 5 tactics to research your marketplace using competitive intelligence skills. 1. Conduct win loss analysis; 2. Talk to internal and external experts; 3. Use trade shows as fact-finding missions 4. Build an information database 5. Remain ethical and avoid deception. I will provide more detail about each of these 5 tactics in future April blogs.
I am reading Seena Sharp’s book Competitive Intelligence Advantage. In the spirit of cooperative intelligence, I am sharing what I liked about the introduction and the first two chapters in this blog. Stay tuned: I will continue my review as I read further!
In honor of my competitive intelligence colleague, Jonathan Calof, 2010 SCIP Fellow winner, I am writing this post on his subject of expertise, trade shows! Trade shows are one of the best venues for cooperative intelligence practices since if you display cooperative connection and communication skills, the floodgates of knowledge will be yours!
On March 23, I will be giving a 2 hour session entitled, “Improve your ROI: Proven Tools & Techniques for Integrating Sales & Marketing” at the American Marketing Association’s Spring Marketing Workshop which takes place in Denver, Colorado from March 22 – 25 at the Westin Tabor Center www.westintaborcenterdenver.com.
The devil is in the details: do you know your audience or clients well enough to know how to connect with them emotionally when you communicate? This is often a weakness in competitive intelligence professionals as we are far too hung up with our world of competitive analysis lingo and perspective. Whether it’s a speech, a project or a simple e-mail communication, you have the opportunity to emotionally connect through cooperative communication if you truly empathize with your customer’s position and care to take note of how they learn and how they like to be communicated with.
Last week I attended a webinar to improve my selling skills led by Colleen Stanley, Founder and Chief Sales Officer of SalesLeadership. Effective selling will help competitive intelligence professionals, product managers and researchers gain respect, cooperation and appreciation from internal peers. Combine emotional intelligence practices and selling with the collection skill of elicitation and watch your effectiveness soar!
In competitive intelligence and research, many of us don’t have any reporting people and report into another functional area of the company. Thus cooperative and purposeful leadership skills are all the more crucial when you rely on other people to give you great information or intelligence who don’t report to you, and your boss perhaps views you as an outlier since competitive intelligence doesn’t quite fit into anyone’s area. My most purposeful leadership was with Sales while I was at Verizon. I knew I needed to be cooperative in order to gain sales intelligence and customer’s input to be successful in competitive intelligence.
AttaainCI received AIIP’s annual technology award announced at Internet Librarian in Monterey, California. AttaainCI software, was launched in early 2008, and provides real-time intelligence gathering, analysis, sharing and reporting alerts. AttaainCI is a good software package to get up to speed on just about any topic, and it’s great to use at the outset of a project whether it’s competitive intelligence or general research for sales, marketing, product management or strategic planning. AttaainCI is a great tool for daily monitoring on topics to get the latest and greatest!
Bryan Moser spoke to our Denver PDMA group about the value of models such as the one his company, Global Project Design developed to forecast, optimize, allocate and measure coordination in complex product development projects. The key takeaway is that coordination is often way underestimated in these complex product development projects across multiple countries. It’s better to run the model earlier in the process, so as to re-schedule or re-work pieces to reduce the less productive coordination time. Choosing the best coordination architecture can lead to a 20% improvement in time/cost performance.
When marketing and R&D are truly focused on understanding and acting on customer needs, it makes both of their jobs easier and their results more productive! This is a powerful competitive weapon since this is not the case at many companies. Perhaps R&D can be masters of the art of possibility while Marketing can master the art of the Possible– that is what customers want and are willing to pay for.