Home > B-Schools, Learning, Market Intelligence, Market Research, Strategy > How to determine best practices by analyzing the market leaders

How to determine best practices by analyzing the market leaders


Last summer a team of interns from a leading B-School in India – Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (IIM-C), developed a Competitive Landscape Analysis methodology at ZENeSYS.

Using this methodology, best practices and opportunity areas can be identified in any industry segment. Once these are known,  businesses can formulate a strategy to enhance their performance.  The methodology works by analyzing the market leaders in any given segment of the industry. Take for example ACME a manufacturer of 100W wind turbines as a case study.

The first step was to determine the market leaders in the 100W wind turbine market segment. The market leaders at the time of the study were as shown in Fig 1.

Fig1. Market Leaders

The next step in this methodology was to determine buyer preferences and vendor goals of this particular wind turbine market segment. These preferences and goals were determined by secondary research through product literature, white papers, industry reports, product reviews, blogs, news articles, and other indirect indicators such as sales figures, customer profiles and customer feedback.

Fig 2. Customer Preferences P1 to P6

The customer preferences P1 to P6 are listed in Fig 2. The goals of 100W turbine vendors are listed as G1 to G6 in Fig 3.

Fig 3. Vendor Goals G1 - G6

In the third step, we create a matrix by cross referencing the Vendor Goals and Customer Preferences as shown in the Synthesis Matrix in Fig 4. This matrix becomes a framework for analyzing each market leader (the vendors listed in Fig 1)

In the fourth and final step, research was done to see which market leaders were  able to address the customer preferences while realizing their goals. Which ever vendor is fulfilling this, their name was put into that particular cell as shown in the completed matrix Fig 4.

Fig 4. CLA Synthesis Martrix for 100W Wind Turbines

Now the interpretation of the populated matrix is quite simple. The cells in a column that show a lot of vendor names are the best practices and the ones that are relatively empty are the opportunity areas.

If we were advising ACME, here are two examples recommendations – one for best practice and one for opportunity area.

  1. Best Practice: Invest in R&D as this is being done by almost all the market leaders (look down in column G1 – almost every market leader is investing).
  2. Opportunity Area: Grab export market share (look down column G3).

ZENeSYS have delivered several engagements using this methodology with great results. No reason why you can try this analysis for your own industry segment. Of course our consultants will be delighted to do it for you.

For a full presentation of our CLA methodology, see our slidesshare posting here.

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