Open Source Competitive Intelligence Seminar Overview

In this two day each seminar participants will develop a profile for a specific competitor.  Students will use a variety of free open source intelligence platforms to gather basic information, perform analyses, and develop recommendations on how to effectively compete with a particular competitor.  It is assumed that the companies covered in the seminar are mostly private companies.  Public companies can be investigated as well.  At the end of the seminar the results of the various profiles will be consolidated into an overall competitive landscape.

Each profile contains seven sections:

Company OverviewA high level overview of the competitor’s business including history, ownership/investors, revenues, financial statements (for public companies), acquisitions, headcount, offices/locations, and key executives.
Product/Service OverviewAn overview of the competitor’s product/service portfolio combined with a feature/function analysis of their solutions versus your company’s solutions.
Marketing OverviewA review of the maturity and sophistication of a competitor’s marketing activities. This includes usage of marketing technology, website performance, keyword advertising, press/analyst relations, analyst reports, user reviews, and marketing/sales content inventory. An analysis of marketing messaging, value equations and proof points is also conducted.
Sales AnalysisA review of the structure of the sales organization, numbers and distribution of sales development reps and account execs, product/service pricing information, inventory of sales tools such as demonstrations, presentations, and webinars. Also includes a review of win/loss analysis (gathered before seminar begins).
R&D/Engineering OverviewA review of the R&D/Engineering organizations, data centers, and technical stack used to build and deliver products and services. Also, an assessment of on shore vs offshore development and customer support.
Professional Services OverviewA review of the competitor’s consulting or professional services organization including offerings, staffing profile, pricing, and notable projects.
Human Resources OverviewA review of the competitor’s human resources operations including employee benefit programs, hiring trends, employee reviews, etc.

At the end of the seminar the participants will develop a summary of each competitor’s key strengths, key weaknesses, best way to beat the competitor, and what situations your company should walk away from.