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10 Minute Competitive Intelligence Guide: Start Here

Learn the basics of Competitive Intelligence in 10 minutes or less

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Mark Siciliano's picture
Mark Siciliano
Contact:
106 Bruno Business Library

205-348-1098

Basic CI Steps

Starting the Process:

1. Determine what questions you are trying to answer
2. Decide what resources you have vs. what you need
3. Gather you data
4. Make information out of the data you have collected
5. Use the information found to create concise action items that can be disseminated to appropriate channels
6. Review > Assess > Repeat


The following topics will be covered in the PowerPoint on the right:

COMPANY BASICS

MANAGEMENT INFORMATION

FINANCIAL INFORMATION

TECHNOLOGY INFORMATION

SALES INFORMATION

EMPLOYEE INFORMATION

Competitive Intelligence Guide

Free Company Information

Yahoo Finance

  1. Type the name in the Quote Lookup search box, located on the left side of the screen.
  2. Click the correct company that appears in the dropdown.

The first page you'll see contains headlines and some basic market information (stock price data). 

On the guide at the left choose, "Profile".  This will give you information about 'what the company does.

Next, click "Competitors".  You'll see a table with competing company financial data.  Under that you'll get news stories about those companies.  Make a list of competing companies...It is essential to know all competitors of a company.

Other things to look at are the " Headlines", "Industry", "Press Releases" and an OVERLOOKED ITEM IN CI, "Message Boards". It is good practice to find out what users/consumers are saying about the company.

Securities & Exchange Commision Search
This is the site that all 'Company' databases get their information from. It contains all the filings for public companies in the US (and foreign companies filing in the US).

Rank and Filed
Everything these days is about visualization.  This site makes a lot of the confusing, dated stuff from the SEC a lot more user-friendly and visually appealing.  Full data tables can be downloaded into excel.

Library Databases

Business Insights: Essentials
1.  Find news about stategic intiatives, products that wasn't covered in Yahoo! Finance. 
2.  Use the Financials tab to get historic data.  Also use it to compare with competitors.
3.  Click the Rankings and Market Share Reports links to get further company details.

Business Source Complete
Find SWOT Analysis, company reports, competitor reports, news stories about your company.

Lexis/Nexis Academic
Research news stories, wire feeds about a product, company or executive.  Also, search the Broadcast Transcript link for stories that may have appeared on TV or radio.  Additionally, Blogs will give you a better understanding of consumer sentiment (good or bad) towards a company or product.