Automated Business Intelligence
- For Small Businesses
Keeping on top of what your competitors are up to is a hard enough job for major corporations, many of who employ full-time business intelligence analysts. It's nearly impossible for the small business operator who is so entrenched in the day-to-day management of their business that they barely have time for their personal life much less monitoring their competitors.
In the small business world, profits are already being shaved to the bone because of rising fuel and insurance costs, increased labor and manufacturing costs, as well as the appearance of "big box" stores in smaller market areas. These factors make it more important than ever for entrepreneurs to keep an eye on the competition in order to react instantly to marketing campaigns, price changes, advertising strategies and other information that can affect profits and sales.
While most small businesses can't afford a dedicated staff who are trained in competitive business analyses, they can afford an inexpensive piece of software called UpdatePatrol.
UpdatePatrol does one thing and it does it well. It sits in a PC's application tray and monitors changes to web pages. Whenever a change is detected it immediatly notifies the user who then visits the page for further investigation.
What's the value in a piece of software like this? A better question might be "Where CAN'T it be used?" Here are a few examples of how small business people are using UpdatePatrol:
- A pizza parlor operator gets new business by honoring all competitor's specials. He added the URLs to his competitors' home pages, and special's pages for those who had one, and his business intelligence program switched to autopilot. Now, whenever any of the monitored pages change, he knows it immediately.
- An advertising speciality company sells cups, pens, t-shirts and other advertising products to both new and established businesses. The county government web site has a page that lists all new business licenses that are issued. UpdatePatrol monitors that page and notifies her whenever the page is updated. She gets fresh, hot leads without having to pay for a lead subscription service.
- A water softener and treatment company uses UpdatePatrol to monitor the Real Estate Transactions page on the hometown newspaper's web site. Whenever a new home sale is listed, UpdatePatrol notifies him and he drops a promotional postcard into the mail. He has a never-ending list of prospects delivered to his desktop automatically.
- A baby photographer uses UpdatePatrol to monitor the birth announcements page on her local newspaper's web site. She mails off an introductory letter and a discount coupon whenever she receives an update. Her competitors subscribe to a news clipping service which delivers those same leads once per week. Her package reaches the newborn's parents up to 10 days before anyone else has a chance to try and make the sale!
If your business could prosper from a little bit of intelligence, do the intelligent thing and visit http://www.updatepatrol.com for more information.