Improving Your Marketing Team with Market Intelligence

By Madison Taylor
April 6, 2022
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Every effective marketing strategy requires intelligence that offers organizations actionable insights to understand their target audience better. The acquired intelligence comes from multiple trusted sources, and when pieced together, they produce a more tangible form of market research that drives effective product and service development.

The first step in having marketing intelligence work for a business involves identifying the specific goals for acquiring the data and achieving them with the gathered information. For example, companies may wish to increase the subscription for a mailing list or improve the sales of a new product offering.

With accurate marketing data, teams become more agile, equipped with significant product intelligence to give their companies a competitive advantage.

Understanding Market Intelligence

Market intelligence refers to useful information derived from the industry or particular market segment. The data enables marketers to create effective positioning strategies based on the latest audience trends, feedback, and preferences. Marketers should always compile marketing data from multiple sources to create a comprehensive and accurate analysis.

Marketing intelligence might include competitor research, data point collection across social media and websites, and survey responses. By interpreting the information, brands and companies can better assess customers’ needs, tailoring future products, promotions, and services accordingly to gain the best response.

Unlike business intelligence, which also plays a critical role in a company’s success, market intelligence focuses on overall trends rather than brand-specific data.

Unpacking the Components of Market Intelligence

Market intelligence-fueled positioning strategies include various segments that require care and thorough research for optimized results. While teams may interpret effective marketing intelligence in varying ways, they typically include:

  • Understanding the competition: Companies should understand how competitors carry out their strategies and deal with customer responses to campaigns, learn from marketing mistakes, and avoid “reinventing the wheel.”
  • Product/service analyses: Decision-makers should go beyond competitive analysis and track the latest unfulfilled customer trends and behaviors, which will serve as the basis for a first-mover advantage. Additionally, businesses should identify the limitations and room for improvement in existing products and services and compare features with the competitor’s offerings.
  • Market understanding: Businesses need to thoroughly analyze industry trends to forecast demand. The analysis process helps marketing teams formulate a better estimation of campaign ROIs. Marketing research will provide teams with secondary data to determine the growth and success of a company’s efforts.
  • Engaging customers: It is crucial for decision-makers to acquire the end user’s perspective, gaining information on product defects, complaints, and honest reviews to fine-tune improved product and service experiences.

Combining these data provides companies with strong positioning strategies that account for various facets of business success, such as growth opportunities, customer engagement levels, and the competitive landscape within the industry.

Qualifying Data — The Defining Difference

While data can help companies gain a better market understanding and competitive advantage, they may also make non-cost-effective decisions. Upon data collection, decision-makers should always verify the accuracy and relevance of their information. Qualified data will provide marketers with the necessary details to reduce costs and improve profitability in their campaigns.

Marketing teams can do so by linking the information back to the original business goals of their market intelligence initiative.

Data interpretation is a sensitive process that might affect the accuracy of overall results. For instance, confirmation bias remains prevalent among industries, where companies selectively retain data that support existing beliefs and ideas. In such cases, marketing teams should minimize bias by re-evaluating data and challenging unsubstantiated claims and assumptions.

Similarly, for product surveys, companies should consider sponsor bias, where respondents may submit positive feedback in exchange for product rewards, leading to inaccurate and ineffective data.

Top It Off With an Action Plan

With a systematic approach, a marketing plan provides companies with the solutions that drive better decisions by shedding light on prospects, customers, and competitors. Market intelligence provides teams with the confidence and data to plan in-depth strategies for interpreting customer patterns, prioritizing product ideas based on competitor and survey trends, and analyzing market opportunities.

The most effective marketing intelligence requires a structured action plan in response to specific goals. Teams can formulate an efficient action plan by collecting and organizing the market data, sorting the relevant information based on business goals, and recommending data-backed decisions based on the correlation.

Smaller companies should consider reaching out to research companies if they require thorough, in-depth research for their market intelligence needs. Analytical experts can offer more nuanced analytics of a targeted market segment by tapping into a broader pool of resources and connections that include distributors, manufacturers, and other key contributors within the industry.

With up-to-speed intelligence and a robust action plan, marketing teams open doors to fresh market insights, improve product intelligence, and connect with customers in newfound ways. The agile marketing intelligence approach empowers businesses to better understand their position and productivity and optimize brand messaging throughout their campaigns.