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One of the world’s largest consumer brands and maker of popular men’s razor blades recently came up with a very clever and interesting way to use PIERS data for competitive intelligence. The company suspected that one of their major competitors was getting ready to release a new razor blade in the U.S., but didn’t know what the new razor looked like or when they were planning to release the product.
This company had simultaneously been working on their own new razor and wanted to counter the release of their competitor’s product. The plan was to let their competitor release their razor first, so they would know how best to position their own razor to steal market share away from their competitor.
They knew that their competitor had an assembly plant in China where they would be manufacturing the razor. They also knew they couldn’t wait for them to start shipping the razors to the U.S. before they started planning and implementing the release of their own product. They would need to rely on something other than the actual shipments of assembled razors to the U.S., to trigger the start of their own product release.
Using PIERS data the company scrutinized their competitor’s shipments to and from the assembly plant over the course of several months. This allowed them to get a good idea of what the regular volume of goods was going in and out of the plant, and also allowed them to estimate the turnaround time for that facility. Eventually, when they saw a spike in the volume of material being shipped to the assembly plant, they knew their competitor was gearing up for the release of the new razor. Thanks to PIERS data they also knew how long after that shipment of materials it would be before the razors made their way to the U.S., allowing them to execute their counter-strategy as planned.