Being a snoop in business isn't necessarily a bad thing,and thanks to technology it's now easier than ever to gain competitive intelligence.
Businesses have more information at their fingertips than ever before to keep abreast of what their competition is doing and react accordingly, say experts.
The volume of information available on private or public companies is greater than existed just a decade ago, says Leonard Fuld, author of "The Secret Language of Competitive Intelligence" (Dog Ear Publishing; $19.95) and president of Fuld + Co., a Boston, Mass.-based competitive intelligence consulting firm.
This is largely because of the Internet, which has enabled companies to access a wealth of information, says Fuld. That wealth, though, can be a "blinding nightmare," he notes, if you do an online search and end up with what looks like a million hits but offers little more than repetitive results.
"You need ways to sift, sort and analyze that information and make sense of it," says Fuld.
Online utilities There are plenty of online tools available to help, notesKevin Kelly, chief creative officer of BigBuzz Marketing Group, a Melville integrated digital advertising agency.
For starters, you can set up aGoogleAlert (google.com/alerts) to notify you whenever a competitor's name comes up in an online conversation, notes Kelly. The company also uses advanced social media monitoring tools such as the fee-based sproutsocial.com, says Matt Mooney, a digital engagement operative at BigBuzz.
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Photo credit: iStock | Businesses have more information at their fingertips than ever before to keep abreast of what their competition is doing and react accordingly, say experts.