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Alain Beauvieux, an advisor of Intelligence2day® was recently interviewed by the French company Visionary Marketing and Innovation after an intriguing article he wrote on LinkedIn explaining the concept of market intelligence.
We have summarized the article in English below.
Market intelligence is a new approach that only early adopters are fully utilising Market and competitive intelligence is the surveillance and monitoring of one’s business environment.
In this interview, Visionary Marketing and Innovation speak with Alain Beauvieux to better understand market intelligence and its current state of affairs and also clear the misunderstanding between English and French jargon in this profession.
While there is some misinterpretation between what separates ‘business intelligence’ and ‘competitive intelligence’ if you disregard the vocabulary and look at the practices, both promise that their platforms are able to follow subjects and topics of interest with relevant information sources.
This is called “sourcing”, underlines Alain Beauvieux, allowing a business to know what the competitors are doing, for example. This is a “watch” approach in the traditional sense, also known as media monitoring, and web monitoring.
“Watching”, although a somewhat passive approach is the first essential step in understanding what your competitors are doing.
The benefits of market and competitive intelligence
Alain Beauvieux recommends market and competitive intelligence as a tool to be able to tell colleagues, collaborators, employees and stakeholders what has happened in the field, as well as store, record and capitalize on the information long after it has been published.
“For example, with the introduction of the time dimension, it is also possible to observe that a competitor is increasingly present in a domain. If we observe the number of published articles discussing this competitor, with the first week of observation finding two items, then three or four in the second week, then one is entitled to ask questions. The explanations can be multiple. The competitor may have hired a communication champion, or is trying to sell the company and give visibility to the business”.
It allows you to take a step back from what is happening on a daily basis, but it also provides a trend analysis that is interesting to analyse.
Market intelligence is a total paradigm shift
Market intelligence is about completely rethinking the approach of simply recapping news from the day before. Rather than monitoring the usual subjects, Alain explains that we need to give ourselves the means to discover elements specific to our market which we do not expect.
“This is all the more relevant since we are in a globalized economy for most sectors, where the competitor of tomorrow is not at all the one we had yesterday”, underlines the expert. As soon as there are technological developments when the cards are folded very quickly, you have to know how to anticipate this threat.
News, for example, could inform us that the Chinese are equipping border guards with Tibet with exoskeletons which is very important, apart from its military or geostrategic nature. Alain explains that “the military give themselves the opportunity to develop a technology and lead to industrial know-how that they will apply in the civilian world, and then put it on the global market.”
Another example is the railway industry where we have discovered that India has decided to call for tenders with construction companies to increase the size of its platforms in stations. This invites reflection. “If they increase the size of the platforms, it is because the trains are also getting bigger, and therefore an entire ecosystem is developing. This information is very important when working in the railway industry, and the discovery becomes essential.”
Market intelligence is based on both monitoring and discovering and we should not oppose the two. With both monitoring and discovering, we must recognize that the competitor of yesterday or today will not necessarily be that of tomorrow, and vice versa.
With market intelligence, we turn to the detection of future and unpredictable events, which can significantly impact business.
Market intelligence is a real technological breakthrough
For Alain, two elements brought about this technological breakthrough:
- On the one hand, it was the vastness of the data available on the web. For the last 10 years, there has been an explosion in the amount of data available, and this will not stop according to Alain Beauvieux. In the past, the first problem to be solved was to have access to the data or to simply dispose of it, which is no longer the case today.
- The second thing is that Google, Facebook, and other major platforms have developed extraordinary algorithms. The companies index not only millions of pages but billions of pages almost instantly. This is very interesting because it means that all this algorithmic that is published in one way or another can be used.
Intelligence2day® is very much inspired by these platforms when designing theirs to be able to work on more than millions of documents, with great flexibility and very good ergonomics of use, emphasizes Alain. “We have inherited the extremely powerful algorithms that the Internet giants have created for the web,” said Alain.
The problem is not information overload, but rather how to use it intelligently.
A brain and mastermind are needed behind market intelligence, he emphasizes. “I teach these topics of market intelligence at MBA ESG where I repeat at least a hundred times in the ten hours of lessons I give per class that the key to success is certainly in the analysis tools, but also in the interpretation. The meaning that the analyst will give is the combination of the two.”