What are primary sources? Well, you already have many excellent sources of primary information. Some of whom you talk to every day.
Your employees are not only your greatest asset. They are also your most significant source of competitive information. They may have previous experience of working with your rivals. Know the people in other organisations and have daily dealings with your customers. The customers who are being pursued by your competitors.
Without compromising any restrictive covenants, your employees may know competitor pricing strategies. Or have a copy of your rival’s sales information.
Look at your business to draw parallels among each department’s business development. The information your business developers find during networking can be precious. But only if it is accessible in a useable format, analysed and acted on.
But it’s just talking
Within your industry sectors, some technologies will advance while others will disappear. But if there’s one thing that will never change in Competitive Intelligence: the humans. The human dimension in gathering primary intelligence is and will always be the best.
Nothing groundbreaking. But it has to be the most critical part of Competitive Intelligence. Primary research is often forgotten about. Especially when it’s more accessible to Google something similar. Or gain access to an overpriced database to access old information.
But your human network is your best source of Competitive and Market Intelligence. As long as you continue to develop and nurtured it.
Start with your:
- Long-established customers and suppliers
- Experience sales reps and vendors
- Industry association meetings and trade shows
Not just them, but whom do they know who will know the answers you are seeking. Before it’s on the internet and it could be too late.
Primary sources within Competitive Intelligence
We hope you enjoyed our introductory article explaining what primary sources are.