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Benchmarking your way from information to action with competitive insights

Colton Wright

November 11, 2021  •  5 min read

Tell me if this sounds familiar:

You’re a leading brand in a competitive industry. You know the consumer landscape has changed. You understand the value of social listening and competitive intelligence (CI) to reach customers across all social media channels and benchmark your brand performance against “The Other Guy.” You’ve invested in lots of different tools that seem to generate plenty of data.

There’s just one thing missing: meaningful action.

If this sounds like you, you’re not alone. Only 27% of executives say their organizations are capable of transforming data into actionable insight. You may have all the data it takes to measure your brand against the competition, but if you can’t take action, you still might fall behind.

The winning formula for competitive intelligence

There are lots of different reasons brands struggle to go from competitive insights to action. Some lack clarity on what constitutes “success” on social channels relative to others in the market. They aren’t sure what better looks like, so they’re paralyzed. Maybe data availability lags behind, so intelligence comes too late and opportunities slip away. Many more are hindered by tedious manual processes. 

On the other hand, brands that effectively leverage competitive intelligence share a few common advantages:

  • The most accurate, up-to-date benchmarking data from across all social channels

  • Automation to move quickly at scale

  • Context-rich competitive insights

  • Marketing and CI teams that have mutual trust and collaborate seamlessly

The right platform for competitive insights and benchmarking can play a huge role in delivering these advantages. Let’s take a look at the ways a great CI tool can give your brand a jolt.

Real-time data to fuel competitive analysis

Imagine this all-too-plausible scenario. A company in your industry falls victim to a cyber attack. Because you had the right platform for competitive insights, you noticed a surge of social media conversations around this brand that keyed you into the attack as it unfolded — a full day before it was even reported on the news. 

That kind of lead time empowers you to take action. Your brand can develop messaging to emphasize data-protection capabilities and share it through channels where these conversations are taking place. You can also proactively allay any fears your customers may have about their sensitive data and assess your own vulnerabilities to this kind of attack. 

The problem is that many competitive insight platforms fall short of delivering this kind of up-to-the-moment social data. They typically use publicly available APIs to source across channels, which results in data that is merely sampled or subject to refresh rates that can be as long as 24 hours. That can be an eternity when a crisis (or opportunity) strikes. 

To avoid these delays, you need a CI partner that leverages direct partnerships with social media channels, so you have access to critical information when you need it most: instantly. You’ll also save hundreds of hours in manual data collection by automating CI capture. The right tool can monitor your competitive ecosystem and automatically notify you of any emerging trends, changes in the market, or imminent risks. 

Richer context for share of voice metrics

Many brands leverage one or more CI tools to measure the social media engagement of their competitors. It may seem like higher raw engagement numbers correlate directly to greater share of voice and better-performing brands. But if your tool doesn’t contextualize your data, it’s telling an incomplete story and impeding action.

The right tool allows you to drill down into the data and better gauge the actual meaning behind share of voice metrics. Imagine what you could do with a “Stories Created” dashboard to automatically identify the source for every competitor story that is driving engagement. With this kind of context, you can understand whether these stories are populating low-visibility sites or reputable sources that are more valuable to potential customers. 

These kinds of deep-insight dashboards also add nuance by showing you what competitor content is (and isn’t) resonating and helping you compare SLA times to benchmark customer service. This kind of context makes the right social strategies easier to recognize and act on.

Competitive intelligence for more effective teams

Competitive intelligence is useful for a wide range of internal teams that help to shape your brand. But the reality is, even though they must collaborate to achieve shared goals, disparate teams like marketing, communications, PR, CI, and sales often operate in silos. And because of this, they tend to use a number of different point solutions for their competitive benchmarking.

This leads to major discrepancies in the interpretation of data. Rather than working from a shared source of truth to better understand their competition, teams end up competing against one another. Clashes like these prevent shared insights, slow you down, and make coordinated action at scale impossible. They can also undermine trust between teams and erode credibility in the eyes of senior leadership. Data silos jeopardize the support you need to create better outcomes. 

A unified customer experience management (Unified-CXM) platform mitigates these risks by integrating seamlessly across teams to create a single source of truth. Rather than dividing teams, a Unified-CXM platform accelerates collaboration and activity at scale. It also creates space for unique perspectives that can lead to innovation. With a single view of the data, credibility and trust aren’t called into question, so new ideas are given room to breathe in a collaborative space.  

The right CI tool isn’t a panacea for every roadblock you’re likely to face. But Sprinklr’s Modern Research with Competitive Insights & Benchmarking gives you:

  • Real-time, AI-driven data with automated Smart Alerts for up-to-the-minute CI

  • Deep-dive dashboards, like Stories Created, for context-rich insights 

  • A Unified-CXM platform to empower your teams, build trust, and unlock innovation

Contact us today to learn how Competitive Insights & Benchmarking can help you bridge the gap from insight to action. 

Colton Wright is a Product Marketing Manager at Sprinklr and is based in Austin, TX. He primarily focuses on our Modern Research product and innovating the latest and greatest social listening strategies. Away from the office, he enjoys traveling, gardening, and playing fetch with his pup.

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