Competitive Intelligence: What Every Equipment Dealer Needs to Know
Competitive intelligence helps equipment dealers determine the reality of their stance in the marketplace. Guesswork or biases are minimized when information about products, prospects, customers, markets and competitors is identified and shared. Such information supports strategic decisions and allows dealers to move ahead with confidence. Here’s what every equipment dealer needs to know.
Who’s your competition?
Competitive intelligence goes beyond naming a few competitor dealers. For each product and service you offer there are competitors, both local and online. Historical purchase data helps you identify which dealers are on the move in your territory, and which are vulnerable. Know the risks and opportunities before they become apparent to others. Being first to know positions you as a leader, not a follower or a “catch up” company. Determine a strategy to solidify and grow your current position in each product category.
Who’s buying what and when?
Salespeople may think they know about every deal in their territory. You know better. Analysis of third party data reveals who the buyers are. Data identifies what equipment was purchased, when it was purchased, where it was purchased, and who’s involved. A quick sort by purchase date isolates current active buyers. Drill down into company purchase histories for insight into replacement cycles, brand data and other buyer behaviors. Keep a constant eye on companies in your market. Reach out to them and you are likely to be in on the next deal.
With competition for bids greater than ever, contractors from all regions are traveling farther from their headquarters to find work. It’s just a matter of time before a new prospect will show up without prior warning in your territory. That’s why you need every tool to help identify prospective customers for your new equipment sales, parts and service.
Who’s going to buy soon?
Take a proactive approach. Apply what you know about machine usage to predict when a company in your territory is likely to replace their machines. Use this information to improve the return on investment from your marketing efforts.
Who are your promotions reaching?
Find out how good your customer and prospect list is. Compare it with a third party list of known equipment buyers in your territory, as well as internal lists of parts, service, sales and rental customers. After reviewing your efforts, determine what percentage of buyers you are covering and what you need to do differently. Market deep within targeted companies. Identify primary and secondary equipment purchasers. Customize lists by product category to reduce waste and deliver more relevant information in your promotion.
What is the size and growth potential of your market?
You have a limited budget for marketing, so spend it wisely. Knowing the market size and growth potential can help you allocate those dollars. The best predictor of future performance is often historical sales and trend data. Marketing to the hot spots and areas where you hold a competitive advantage can often reap the most rewards.
Can You See the Big Picture?
Drilling down into specific products is important, but management also needs to see the big picture. Big picture data can help you evaluate diversification strategies for your dealership.
Data needs context. EDA makes it easy to turn data into competitive intelligence. Knowing market realities and your ability to compete sets the stage for great performance.
What do you need to know to compete more effectively?