Usenet Competitor Analysis: The Network that Will Give You Competitive Edge
No matter what industry you work in, every market has competition. This should go without saying for any business professional, that an understanding of your company’s competition is by and large a critical component of staying ahead in the business world.
Without knowing what your competition is up to, you’re left in a fantasy world where you’re the only player in the game. While this might be ideal if you’re playing video games, this is not the case in reality. In the business world, there are many players.
Fortunately, there are many tools at your disposal in order to gain a peek at what your competition is up to, and this is all a part of competitor analysis. While there are common pathways to this approach, some are less known but worth looking into, like Usenet.
What is a Competitive Analysis?
At its core, a competitive analysis is nothing more than identifying the main players (your competition) in a given market. Further, a competitive analysis also identifies what strategies your competition is using to acquire gains and can alert you to resources that you can use to meet new goals.
While there are several conventional models for performing competitive analysis, Usenet is one powerful tool that is often overlooked, mostly because not too many people have heard of it.
Usenet might be a new term to you unless you were chatting online back in the ’80s and early ’90s. Usenet is a network apart from the Internet that we all use today. Though you can access Usenet via the Internet, its network operates as its own separate entity.
The Usenet network is like a chat room filled with what are known as newsgroups. These newsgroups are all typically text-based discussion boards, and they all operate under specific topics. You can find everything from marketing tips to philosophical ramblings on Usenet at any time.
What’s great about Usenet when it comes to competitor analysis is that you can browse the topics and discussions to find conversations about your competitors.
While Usenet can be accessed by a web browser, it’s best to access it with a Usenet provider.
From the Usenet network, you can not only identify competition in your industry, you can basically listen in on conversations about market gains, competitor resources, and target consumers based on this data. From this aspect, Usenet is truly a smart business tool.
Additionally, from the Usenet platform, you can perform two types of Resource-Based View (RBV) analysis.
Tangible assets are resources that the company has. Though you’ll have to watch the conversations on Usenet closely and probably do a lot of scrolling through text, the things to look for regarding tangible business tools are as follows:
- E-Commerce Websites
- Mobile Applications
- Brick-and-Mortar Locations
- Capital Sources
Here’s where you’ll want to pay attention even closer because intangible assets are harder to track, but this is where discussions on Usenet can be highly useful for competition analysis.
Intangible assets refer to any type of intellectual property your competitor might have, notes on customer experience and targeting, brand positioning, work culture, and other aspects of a business that are much harder to replicate than with those listed in the tangible assets section.
If you’re able to isolate valid data regarding your competitors’ intangible assets, replicating them and using these as resources can provide you with a much more competitive edge going into the future.
Usenet is a totally different experience than what many people are accustomed to with the Internet and social media. Within newsgroups, you’ll connect with colleagues, competitors, and everyone in between on a basic level, and all the information is accessible to anyone.
Usenet might be a dinosaur that predates the Internet itself, but like all technology, it has evolved into a tool that can be a vital asset to anyone looking to advance their business over the competition.
Everyone starts out in a niche with a finite amount of resources at their disposal. With Usenet, you can take your competitive edge to the next level and put the other players behind you, or out of the game entirely.