Data is a key driver across industries today. Firms are making the most of the digital disruption and capitalizing on emerging technologies and innovations to mine customer data and gain actionable insights. Intelligence obtained from market data not only enables you to streamline processes but also helps you marry your offerings to customer expectations. For instance, in the last 6 months, consumer habits changed dramatically as increasing vaccination rates have prompted improvements in their lifestyle. Continually tracking such changes is vital. Navigating today’s hypercompetitive and digital-first business environment has rendered market intelligence more important than ever before. What does this mean for decision-makers as they look forward to entering the post-pandemic future?
Across sectors, firms have increased investments in market intelligence to foster customer-centric business strategies and retain a competitive advantage. One such example is Pistil Data’s entry into the cannabis market. In a market that struggled to keep track of sales opportunities, cannabis companies generally lacked access to market intelligence data. Pistil Data’s technology was able to turn this around by analyzing and organizing billions of data points every day. The result was higher sales opportunities for cannabis brands.
Market intelligence is a holistic process that involves gathering vast amounts of data, cleaning, organizing, and presenting the information in consumable formats such as graphs and dashboards, and extracting relevant, actionable insights. These insights can help businesses to understand competitor strategies and identify the right market growth opportunities.
The comprehensive nature of this process has prompted firms to automate their market intelligence processes to effectively organize and mine large amounts of available information. For instance, recently, GFK launched an AI-powered intelligence platform gfknewron to combine consumer and brand data and analytics that can further provide automated forecasts. In another example, S&P Global Market Intelligence uses an AI-enabled workflow tool to efficiently extract insights from a given text. The growing adoption of AI and ML technologies is set to fuel data-driven business growth across industries.
Propelling your business towards growth with market intelligence
From recognizing growth opportunities and competitive threats to staying future-ready, market intelligence can open a window of opportunity to fuel business growth. Here are six essential ways in which data obtained from a well-executed market intelligence process can prove instrumental to the success of a business:
1. Offers a 360-degree view into the market
Market intelligence provides a complete overview of the emerging megatrends and opportunities for growth. From market sizing and forecasting to a start-up ecosystem analysis, market intelligence processes inform you of your key growth drivers and inhibitors, offering insight on the who’s who, what’s what, where, when, why, and how of the market. A deep understanding of the business environment, market opportunities, and risks can help ensure business expansion or market entry success.
For instance, a market opportunity analysis synthesizes in-depth market research and client data to identify and assess opportunities for business growth across target markets. Before entering a market, businesses need to examine aspects like existing value propositions, regulations, demand, and competition, among other potential influencers. A market opportunity analysis helps identify and evaluate such aspects to develop a strategic plan for market growth and expansion.
2. Provides competitive intelligence
Market intelligence data helps you keep a close eye on your competitors by tracking and studying competitor activity. This not only helps to benchmark products, services, and processes to recognize evolving best practices and differentiate your offerings but also lets you be wary of threats to your business and emerging market disruptors. Data gathered from market intelligence processes offers competitive insights, backed by accurate, current, and complete information.
Methodologies like primary and secondary research, social listening, and IP analytics help monitor the competitive landscape to provide timely competitive intelligence. The process can support business development and strategic planning. This includes several services ranging from competitor tracking, profiling, and business model research to technology portfolio assessment and competitive benchmarking studies.
3. Provides timely consumer insights
With continually shifting consumer habits and multiple drivers and barriers influencing consumer choice, understanding your customer and their evolving preferences is key. Holistic and timely consumer insights are more important than ever.
From leveraging CSAT surveys and social listening to conducting sentiment analysis, market intelligence can be leveraged to understand and analyze emerging consumer trends and provide timely consumer insights.
4. Maximizes benefit from your product/service offerings
Market intelligence is crucial for improving your products and services. Do your products meet the needs of their intended users? Will the product be profitable in the long run? Data obtained from product, concept, and claim testing studies can let you understand the market need, potential for new products, and customer sentiment during the product development stage itself. Intelligence gathered can further enable you to maximize benefits from existing products. It can also inform growth decisions and improve product portfolios.
5. Keeps abreast of new technologies and innovations
The fast-paced new ‘digital’ normal has paved the way for a host of emerging technologies and innovations ranging from AI and ML capabilities to blockchain and 5G. Timely knowledge of the latest technology trends can help you implement advanced strategies to stay ahead of the curve. Data from market intelligence studies can provide adequate technology and innovation research that can, in turn, enable firms to spot potentially disruptive technologies and competitors early on. The process can also provide insights into the potential impact of disruptive technologies on their business.
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6. Prepares you for a proactive response during unforeseen crises
Conducting market intelligence studies is of extreme importance to establish preparedness in the event of an unprecedented crisis and major market disruptions. Amid hurricane Frances in 2004, Walmart analysts dug out records of past purchases from other Walmart stores under similar circumstances. By utilizing a history of customer data, they were able to gauge which goods to send to Florida. Truck-loads of Pop-Tarts and beer kept the population of Florida happily buzzed and led to large profits as well! The COVID-19 pandemic is the largest ongoing disruptive event that continues to illustrate the need for market intelligence in firms today.
MI has undoubtedly become an integral must-have for firms across industries. Companies will continue to invest in market intelligence solutions going forward. This includes implementing the right tools, adopting the latest technologies to optimize data collection and presentation, and mining the available data to derive comprehensive market insights. The degree to which technological disruptions will impact and advance market intelligence remains to be seen.
With multiple market forces at work, businesses need expert market intelligence to make sense of fast-moving, competitive and complex business environments. Netscribes’ market research solutions provide integrated information and insights to solve the most pressing business challenges. To better understand how our comprehensive solution can inform your marketing and strategic growth initiatives, contact us.