Knowing How Your Competitors Are Positioned: The Key to Competitive Intelligence

When was the last time you assessed how your competitors compare to your product or company?

If you have not reviewed a judge’s rating recently, you are not alone. It is an element of competitive analysis that is often overlooked.

“Many companies start marketing and advertise as if the competitor’s position does not exist. They advertise their products in a vacuum and are disappointed when their messages are not conveyed,” observe Al Ries and Jack Trout in their marketing classics. Location: the Battle in front of you.

Confirming your unique position can make a big difference in the effectiveness of your marketing and the success of your sales efforts. According to Neuro-marketing by Christophe Morin and Patrick Renvoise, the part of the brain that makes decisions seeks evidence to make decisions quickly. When competing companies create similar sales and marketing applications, the buyer’s brain gets confused, leading to long sales cycles, price wars, or even no decisions.

This article uses leading cloud-based financial planning and analysis (FP&A) companies as examples of effective and ineffective functions. This article explains how to position your competitors and how to better present those results. Once you know how to position your competitors, you can use a technique that I call “perceptual mapping” to see how a particular company is positioned in relation to its competitors.

Your position should be the foundation of everything you do in marketing. Use it as the theme of all your marketing communications to harness the power of consistency and repetition. (Neuro-marketing explains that when you regularly repeat your point of view, the listeners’ brains find it important and remember it.)

Site evaluation is the quickest and easiest way to determine where your competitors are. A classification statement usually appears prominently on a website’s home page. A good idea contains an idea or concept of targeted benefit that solves a real business challenge and, preferably, the biggest problem for the target audience.

An effective positioning statement should be a short explanatory phrase that expresses a benefit that resolves an urgent hearing problem. Some examples:

  • The Eckerson Group helps your organization gain more business value from data and analytics through strategic consulting, innovative leadership, and training.
  • inRiver is the fastest and easiest way to create product marketing content that encourages your customers to buy more.
  • The kit software helps to maximize the value of your commodity trading.

Analyze the elements of the site for each of your competitors, such as the product page, the solution page, the “why us?” page, and the “about us” page. To learn more, you can review other marketing communications, such as emails, invitations to webinars, brochures, banners, and press releases.

Below are examples of FP&A with links to real content that will help you better understand how to position a business.

only one FP&A company is using the power of consistency and repetition effectively: vein. On its website, Vena highlights its attitude of “helping you to grow”. The dominant copy on the Vena home page: “Vena brings your people, processes, and systems together in a comprehensive planning platform, so you can grow together anywhere.”

When scrolling down, you will find the following headings:

  • Start growing
  • Start your growth trajectory
  • Join more than 800 companies traveling to Vena

Vena is thus positioned around the idea of   growth. The reason why I chose the phrase “guide your growth plan” for the perceptual map is this title on the Financial Planning and Analysis page: “FP&A software to drive your growth plan”.

Prophix boldly states its position on its home page: “Change the way you budget, plan and report”.

To enforce the claim, Prophix must explain how the budget, planning, and reporting changes. However, there is no evidence on the website – no evidence of the transformation request.

It is easy to discover the Council’s position for the ‘no’ statement. The ‘decision platform’ dominates the entire site, from the homepage to the platform page and the page about us.

After determining the position of each participant, organize the speeches in a table. Some competitors are likely to have similar or even identical positioning claims. Other competitors may

Stay in your position. Why? If the copy participant changes position so quickly, they are likely to change again soon. In this sense, you can see the invasion as positive, as competitors who cancel their position do not have the discipline to claim a single position, which takes time (minimum 18 months) and persistence. Instead of consistently using their point of view (which is yours too) to repeat the benefit indefinitely, they are likely to take an arbitrary approach: that is, many benefits that ultimately dilute your general point of view.

Therefore, this random approach will lead to almost no position, as your target audience will not remember. They will remember your point of view if you use the power of repetition to reinforce it. They may even think that your competitor is stealing your order (whatever you do).

Whatever your competitors’ position, you want to know as soon as possible. A change indicates that this competitor should be monitored more closely. This may indicate a change in management, a resignation from the CMO when a new CMO moves in a new direction, or a change in the company’s overall strategy.

Regularly checking the position of your competitors is a process that should be accepted rather than neglected. This is the basis of your competitive intelligence efforts, as it provides much more information than your unique position.