Competitive analysis matters in everything.
This one is where your sales force is very critical. Product lines and business units will tell you how it really is (from the inside). The sales force can tell you how it really is on the street. They spend the most face time with your customers and they get more direct feedback than anyone else so it is critical to evaluate competition from the sales force perspective.
Sales people can be a canary in a coal mine but they can help you quickly get to the truth. They will overreact instantly to a customer critique because it will hit them in the pocketbook. Internal business units will react less to any one input because they have others to soften the blow. They can miss the truth and still get by but an individual sales person has one customer to pay his bills.
This is always a fine line and as someone that runs the global Web site, you will find yourself being the arbriter of these debates. It is important to closely understand both of these stakeholders so that you can advocate the solution from either direction. That will help you broker the best and most successful strategy to pursue.
It is always important to evaluate your competitors frequently and track their progress. Competition is very open on the Web. Everyone is putting their best offer forward for their potential customers so you can monitor their targets, how quickly they are evolving their offers, and from this estimate how much they are investing in certain markets or efforts.
This analysis is necessary for markets, products, and Web sites. Apply your resource where the effort will sustain and accelerate the growth into the best markets and customers. You have to regularly refresh these perspectives by connecting with your stakeholders and visiting customers with sales people in the field.
This Web site is aimed at capturing some of the basic concepts I use when creating integrated marketing programs and leveraging the internet.
Phil Gibson ©2016