Breaking Down Market Intelligence

Market intelligence can incorporate a whole range of information that is relevant to your company. To try and make sense of all these different avenues of information, we will look at different areas within which market intelligence can help support key business decisions.

Firstly, there is a large distinction that needs to be made between market and business intelligence. In short, market intelligence looks outwardly at the market and other factors that can have an effect on your business. While business intelligence is information concerning the business itself. This type of information is fairly simple and straightforward for a small company in its early stages. Yet, as a business grows, the information surrounding it does too, and this type of intelligence can become almost equally complex as market intelligence.

Returning solely to market intelligence, you need to begin by asking yourself what areas of decision-making you need market intelligence to support. It could be market opportunity, market penetration or market development.

Market opportunity looks at how the product or service you offer can fulfil the needs of a particular market better or equal to other opportunities currently available. The market intelligence needed for this might be something such as information of current direct competition in a certain field, evaluating USPs of competitors (or lack of), or simply highlighting large gaps in the market that it may be possible to fill.

Market penetration is looking more specifically at how your product/service has had an effect on a market overall. Market intelligence aimed towards something such as brand tracking can help with this. This is a way in which, you can see a snapshot of how your brand is currently tracking with consumers in several key areas and how this relates to direct competition. You can perform these brand tracks as often as you want, by doing so you can see a clear picture of how your market share has changed over time, thus seeing how successful market penetration has been.

Lastly, market development, is in many ways similar to market opportunity, but with more of an emphasis placed on completely new market segments. So, instead of looking at unfulfilled gaps in the market, it is identifying how gaps in the market appear. This may be due to changes in lifestyle, technology, preferences, etc. This can be a more nuanced version of market intelligence, as it needs to show trends in consumer behaviour in real-time, while making some level of prediction of how these trends will develop in the future.