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State of Competitive Intelligence - 2020
2020 State of Competitive Intelligence
In this article: A report-out from the world's largest study of market and competitive intelligence practices, in partnership with Crayon.

In an increasingly crowded marketplace, how are companies getting intelligence on their competitors, customers, and thought leaders?

Every year, Crayon performs primary research to get to the bottom of that question. This year, SCIP and Crayon teamed up to survey 1,000+ professionals involved in competitive intelligence in some capacity, from marketers performing CI part-time to full-time CI personnel, to learn the best practices, challenges, and opportunities in the field of competitive intelligence.


CI teams are growing: More than half (57%) of businesses have CI teams of two or more dedicated CI professionals, compared to just 37% of businesses two years ago.

CI is time intensive: Researching, analyzing, and communicating CI takes up an average of 33 hours per week. This year's study saw an increase in time devoted to communication.

Ignore the basics at your own peril: Defining Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and distributing intelligence to the proper channels played the biggest role in whether or not CI impacted revenue.

Updates are more frequent: 44% of businesses update their CI resources on a daily or weekly basis (nearly double the rate from our 2019 report.)

Websites are still #1: The competitor website was rated the top source of competitive intelligence data, with 98% of businesses saying this source was valuable.

Communication is key: Companies that share CI daily or weekly were twice as likely to see revenue increases as a result of CI compared to those who share CI less frequently.

Driving business outcomes is critical: Companies that saw revenue increases as a result of CI were 63% more likely to increase CI headcount and 66% more likely to increase CI budget this year.

Common Challenges
The study revealed that CI professionals still struggle with much of the CI program foundation, including competitor research and impact measurement. More than a third of CI effort still goes towards CI research, and gathering competitive data is the #1 challenge faced by CI professionals. Further, only 44% have defined key performance indicators, however, those that do have established KPIs are twice as likely to see revenue increases as a result of CI.

Ad-hoc is the Achilles heel of an effective program. If work is being done ad-hoc, it will be nearly impossible to gain meaningful insights, enable your team effectively, or to measure the impact of your program." - Study Participant




“The competitive landscape has changed - it's easier than ever for competitors to go to market and innovate, making the need for competitive intelligence greater than ever.”
Ellie Mirman



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SCIP - Strategic & Competitive Intelligence Professionals - 7550 IH 10 West, Suite 400 - San Antonio, TX 78229 USA