The BNet Report has just posted a comprehensive “crash course” on “How to Gather Competitive Research.” The article formulates the basic framework of competitive analysis—including application of “SWOT analysis” and (Michael Porter’s) “Five Forces”—and then lists the best research resources. “Three quarters of the information you’ll need…to research a U.S.-based company is available publicly,” the authors say. They provide a thorough list of online sources such as the SEC, Standard & Poors, media sites, a copyright/patent database, along with a link to a related article, “Where to Find the Competitive Information You Need.” Anecdotes also provide instruction. For instance, an analyst wanted to know how many employees worked at the rival of a subject company, so he positioned a team member on public property, just outside the factory entrance. “The researcher counted how many cars passed through the gates in the morning to develop an estimate of how many people worked there.” For the complete article, click here.
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