Knowing what your competitors are planning or how competitive products are trending in the marketplace, could impact your decision-making progress. Competitive intelligence not only is an important component in developing a business strategy, it provides insight into market dynamics and challenges. Earnings, revenue, product features and performance, new technologies, new markets, M&A activity, and divestment are just a few of the marketing components that could yield strategic information. For competitive intelligence to be effective, you must determine exactly what it is that you need to know. You should also build in measurable milestones to gauge the progress of the program and help keep it on track.