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Turning Data into Market Intelligence

Identifying Your Position

It’s important to monitor the market on an ongoing basis to review competitor trends and consumer behavior. Researching and analyzing this information turns this vital data into intelligence. This is a transformation of sorts, giving this market information meaning and which can be used to take further action and develop marketing plans. Ultimately, this market intelligence gathering will distinguish the brand from the competition, giving it an advantage in the marketplace. In addition to the holistic view of the market, this intelligence gathering will also improve customer retention, enhance the sales process, and boost efficiency and productivity.

Whether you are a new company or an established business, you must first identify your goals. What are you trying to achieve with your market intelligence efforts? According to an article on market intelligence in Search Engine Journal, data is the key to answer many questions about the business. These questions, per SEJ, could include:

  • Do our company goals align with the current market?
  • What market(s) are a good fit for our brand? Should we consider expanding or focusing on a niche?
  • Does our business need to shift resources to meet our goals?
  • How do customers go about purchasing our product?
  • How do customers become aware of our product?
  • What does our ideal target customer look like?
  • What are competitors doing that we’re not?

Searching for Data Intelligence

In All Things Insights’ “Reinventing the Data Relationship,” we brought the data science community together to look at the partnership between data and business stakeholders. Just like with market intelligence gathering, the focus is now on what the data can do for the organization to outpace disruption, provide innovation and ultimately serve the current customer better. Business leaders and data science strategy executives joined forces at the All Things Insights MADS Continued Gathering. Looking back and looking ahead, these data science experts examined their analytics strategies in the context of the current economic environment.

Working With Insights

Market intelligence and insights are closely related concepts that can work together to provide a comprehensive understanding of a market, industry, or business environment. Once you have your market intelligence data, insights can go beyond the raw data and involve interpreting and deriving meaningful conclusions from the collected information. We asked ChatGPT to explore ways that market intelligence and insights intersect.

  1. Data Collection and Analysis: Market intelligence starts with collecting a wide range of data from different sources. This data includes market size, growth rates, competitor strategies, customer behavior, and more. Once collected, this data is analyzed to identify patterns, trends, and anomalies.
  2. Insight Generation: The analysis of the collected data leads to the generation of insights. These insights could be about emerging market trends, changing customer preferences, competitive strengths and weaknesses, or even potential gaps in the market.
  3. Informed Decision-Making: Market intelligence provides the foundation of factual information, while insights add depth and context. Together, they help decision-makers understand the implications of the data and make informed strategic choices.
  4. Validation and Strategy Development: Insights derived from data analysis are often validated using market intelligence to ensure their accuracy and reliability. Once validated, these insights play a crucial role in shaping business strategies, product development, marketing campaigns, and more.
  5. Continuous Learning: Both market intelligence and insights are ongoing processes. As the market evolves, new data is collected, and insights are updated. By continuously integrating new information and refining insights, businesses can stay competitive and adapt to changing market conditions.
  6. Feedback Loop: Insights can lead to adjustments in data collection strategies. If an insight reveals a gap in the data collected, market intelligence efforts can be adjusted to gather the missing information.

Finding the Right Patterns

In essence, market intelligence provides the data-driven context, while insights provide the strategic understanding that enables businesses to make effective decisions and navigate the market. Integrating both approaches ensures a well-rounded perspective on the market and drives more impactful actions.

Whether you are undertaking competitor intelligence, product intelligence, or market or customer understanding, collecting data is just the first step—next, one must unpack such data. As HubSpot notes in its article “How Market Intelligence Will Make Your Marketing Team More Agile,”: “Having a clear direction is essential during this stage to narrow down what data to focus on. You’ll be compiling a lot of data, and not all of it will be relevant to your main objective. Knowing which will be most impactful will save you time and allow you to use your resources efficiently.”

Video courtesy of Crayon Competitive Intelligence

Contributor

  • Matt Kramer

    Matthew Kramer is the Digital Editor for All Things Insights & All Things Innovation. He has over 20 years of experience working in publishing and media companies, on a variety of business-to-business publications, websites and trade shows.

    View all posts

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