Archive for August, 2016
The Title alone of this likely makes many of you Wonder!
Many Successful sales resources are focused on Reacting. Reacting to customers, reacting to bosses, reacting to your company; that IS what some sales people do.
Unfortunately, it can really backfire. As a sales professional, if you just keep reacting, it can have a number of negative effects:
- The Customer will begin to expect that you will Always React, no matter the request.
- You give away all of your Power to the Customer.
- You lose the ability to Coordinate the Sales Process (Notice I did not say Control!)
- Your Competition will know that you are taking this approach, and use it against you.
So, instead of Reacting, how about this as an approach:
- Confirm that there is Reason to do what the Customer is asking of you
- Question those Asking you the Key Questions:
- Why is this Important?
- Why is…
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Yesterday I listened to Barbara Tallent of LiveBinders deliver “Why are there so few good product managers: a CEO’s Perspective.” She has been both a CEO and product manager and had interviewed 6 CEOs to prepare for this webinar. As I listened, I couldn’t help but put on my competitive intelligence hat, as many of the traits that make a good product manager also make a good competitive intelligence manager. Yet the jobs are so different!
Product managers have all the responsibility for the product, yet none of the authority. The best product managers need to understand the customer’s world. Don’t filter customer’s input based on what you believe. A common question product managers ask executives is “what keeping you up at night?” to get focused on what the executive needs immediately. That is the same question I ask executives during the competitive intelligence needs analysis process…
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Competitive Intelligence has historically focused on strategic and tactical forms of intelligence. In fact, SCIP changed its acronym from Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals to Strategic and Competitive Intelligence Professionals. While competitive intelligence is an important component in strategic planning, and companies benefit from scenario planning: many companies miss the boat by not conducting and communicating competitive intelligence in real-time. Real-time competitive intelligence deserves to be a focus within the profession.
Many companies think they are conducting real-time competitive intelligence since they monitor their market landscape continuously on the Internet and increasingly through social media such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook as well as industry specific forums or social networks like Ning. While monitoring is the foundation of real-time market intelligence, it is not actionable. The action you take in real-time will give you a competitive advantage. As David Meerman Scott said at our AIIP conference, “Speed…
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At a recent Denver joint SCIP and APMP chapter meeting, I was asked to put together some introductory slides about competitive intelligence to set the stage for the more sophisticated discussion around “Price to Win,” which is sophisticated analysis around bids/outcomes for major contracts, usually with huge government customers.
Competitive Intelligence Process
As I assembled my slides, I realized that very little has changed in the competitive intelligence (CI) process, while the execution of the collection phase of competitive intelligence has changed remarkably over the 20+ years I have been in the business with the advent of the Internet in all its iterations, e-mail, text messaging and more recently through social networks. This also affects counterintelligence, since it is easier for your competitors—or anyone who is interested enough—to dig up information about your company that you consider proprietary. This information comes not only through electronic means, but through ex-employees, especially from all…
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