Fletcher has been a leader in Competitive Research for 35 years, serving clients across the globe. Our innovative approach to gaining strategic insights for our partners has influenced and shifted the CI industry, as well as industries we work in. Our ability to find the most impactful information to act on stands unparalleled.
Primary research is the backbone and foundational element of all the work that Fletcher does. We scour the internet and invest in databases like everyone else, but our real value proposition and key differentiator is our unique ability to identify and engage subject matter experts in deep, relevant conversations. We believe that some of the most critical intelligence lies in the brains of experts—and so we interview those experts, versus simply relying on published sources. Secondary research may be used to develop a baseline of knowledge from publicly available sources, but real conversations provide the most powerful information and actionable intelligence.
*Primary is current and often forward-thinking (i.e., perspectives) versus historical.
Fletcher has specialized in primary research for over 30 years. It’s in our DNA. Our industry experts leverage their experience to dig deep and not settle for surface-level answers. Our primary research services range from ad-hoc/quick-turn projects to multi-year engagements and cover both tactical and strategic subjects. Regardless of the scope or duration of the project, we provide synthesized and contextualized answers to Key Intelligence Topics (KITs) and Key Intelligence Questions (KITs), as well as recommendations and our thoughts on what the information means. We don’t just provide raw data—we deliver intelligence to support strategies.
When projects initiate, we establish a comprehensive research plan to prioritize goals, and continue to refine the scope throughout the project lifecycle. Initial project steps often include interviews with the key client stakeholders to better understand their current baseline understanding as well as their key needs.
Teams put on their analysis hats on day one, and always think about what the primary data means as the intelligence is aggregated throughout the project. During the course of projects, we regularly communicate with clients to share our findings and align on priorities. We assign a single point of contact or project manager for all projects, and keep clients informed of progress, findings, and any potential roadblocks. At the end of the project, we never surprise our clients, as they have been updated on all the relevant details throughout the engagement. We strive to build true partnerships with our clients and always maintain two-way communication.
Simply put, we deliver the intelligence our clients need to drive their strategies. We provide in-depth research and analysis with multiple corroborated sources to give clients answers to their most challenging tactical and strategic questions. Our final deliverables are structured to be shared with everyone from senior management to analysts. We tell what we gathered and what we think.
A leading insurer experienced lower-than-expected sales in certain regions across the U.S. The client hypothesized that commission rates were influencing broker recommendations to clients. Fletcher lined up a series of in-depth interviews with brokers and end-customers to identify decision factors used in selecting carriers. The research revealed that commission differences were insufficient to sway a recommendation and instead the insurer’s product lacked certain customer service aspects viewed as preferential. This insight allowed the insurer to make tactical product changes, allowing them to be more competitive in the future.
A top insurer believed their agent support programs were not competitive with similar programs offered by competitors, resulting in agents being less successful in some markets. To support the insurer, Fletcher interviewed competitor agents across a variety of markets to understand what levels of support they received for marketing, administration, professional development, and more. The study revealed superior support levels from competitive insurers to their agents in the field and a direct correlation between success and loyalty from these agents. This intelligence supported the insurer’s hypothesis and decision to increase their support for field agents for office automation to improve agent efficiency.
A top ten US-based biotechnology company required intelligence primarily on the threat of a forthcoming biosimilar competitor from Asia. A second objective was to identify the US commercialization partner. Fletcher lined up several in-depth, high-quality interviews with well-placed sources in Asia, and conducted deep secondary research and analysis, including accessing proprietary databases. Our results identified the development stage of the biosimilar product and the selected contract research organization (CRO) tasked with setting up PII trials. The research also yielded the expected testing protocol, the planned regulatory pathway, and the expected US launch date.
A global pharmaceutical corporation required a better understanding of the competitive landscape to support the business case for a new product to enter the US market. Fletcher conducted customized primary research to help the client identify and develop a KOL Advisory Committee, possible clinical trial sites, top indication-treating centers of influence, potential partners, and a deeper understanding of the payer and competitive environment. The competitive landscape assessment identified six high-threat competitors with current market authorizations and other developing compounds that would impact the space and have the highest opportunity for success. The business case analysis uncovered a significant ($1B) market opportunity for the client and set forth clinical criteria needed in the US to establish non-inferiority over the primary competitor, relative to the guidelines of two professional societies.
To obtain a clear view of a competitor’s launch plans and determine market reaction, a worldwide pharmaceutical giant engaged Fletcher to conduct extensive primary research on competitor messaging, sales force ramp-up, thought leader development, product launch dates, and overall commercialization strategy. Fletcher also educated the client on KOL’s perceptions on the current treatment landscape and emerging paradigms. The information collected and analyzed enabled the client to re-evaluate current strategies and tactics with regards to sales field-force size and structure, market messaging, and overall launch plans.
A startup insurtech provider retained Fletcher to assess the competitive landscape and customer sentiment toward market offerings. Fletcher used a mixed Competitive Intelligence and Voice of Customer research methodology to present strategic product and sales recommendations, prompting the company to refine its target market and reposition its marketing materials to better align with customer needs.
Fletcher assisted acquisition efforts for an international RV manufacturer by assessing perceptions of target companies from their distribution channels, suppliers, customers, and employees. Findings in this study significantly impacted the rankings and risk factors of the acquisition targets.
Win/Loss analysis is an ongoing, systematic analysis of why a company’s deals are won and lost. The process is simple, but the results are powerful because they help decision makers implement company-wide changes.
Win/Loss 2.0 is Fletcher’s holistic approach to traditional W/L. Win/Loss 2.0 focuses on all aspects in the customer buying cycle, from needs assessment to renewal. The three pillars of Win/Loss 2.0 are Voice of Customer (VoC), traditional W/L, and Renewal Intelligence.
Voice of Customer incorporates direct interviews and surveys with prospects and customers to better understand current met and unmet needs, as well as likely future needs. VoC has direct application to product development, strategy, sales approaches, and marketing.
Fletcher has been a leader in Win/Loss analysis for over 25 years. Our unique approach is highlighted by two key differentiators; we look at Win/Loss through a strategic lens (not just the salesperson or price), focusing on all the key decision factors through a combination of both qualitative (interviews) and quantitative (surveys) methodologies. Secondly, we dive deeper into the competitive mix of the deal, gleaning competitive insights as part of the overall deal analysis.
Our win/loss project teams are comprised of industry experts steeped in both the nuances of their industry as well as interview techniques, providing a unique ability to dive deep into the details and context of the deal. Our expertise is continued into our strategic summary reports, which highlight the key strategic themes for win and losses and provide recommendations to increase win rates with the right margin profile.
Renewal Intelligence is a vastly underappreciated concept. So much effort is made to gain a customer, but not as much attention is paid around renewals. Renewal intelligence is a method to systematically contact current customers to understand their current level of satisfaction and likeliness of renewing. Fletcher helps clients understand the timing elements of when to contact customers and the key topic areas to focus on.
Fletcher partners with our clients to ensure that the results of a win/loss program are not just informative but provide strategic insights and value to ultimately improve performance. We have a turnkey approach and can provide any template or document (both for internal client purposes and for the customer/prospect communication) required for a successful program.
Our dedicated project teams develop a discussion guide (and survey if appropriate) that’s standardized but allows for customization to meet the project’s goals. Our analysts conduct deep interviews and summarize the findings in “Deal Reports,” which include a summary of the deal along with verbatims around the key topics. The interviews are then summarized into Strategic Summary Reports, which contain analysis and recommendations based on specific product/service lines, dates, geographies, or other themes.
Win/Loss 2.0 provides intelligence and recommendations across the entire customer buying cycle. Ultimately, Win/Loss 2.0 helps companies create an aligned value proposition, increase win rates, and increase retention rates.
The aggregation of several deals over time lets us deliver recommendations about product features, positioning strategies, and sales approaches. This powerful tool can help clients understand customer priorities and meet them better than their competitors.
Fletcher’s LiveInsightsTM platform is a cutting edge Win/Loss tracking and analysis tool. We provide industry leading Win/Loss data-analytics as well as intuitive access project deliverables and updates in real-time. The Sentiment Analysis Engine visualizes individual and aggregate deal-outcome drivers utilizing a curated set of metrics tailored to each client and industry. We’ve developed this tool to quantify the context around deal-outcome drivers, addressing the shortcomings of simple metric frequency counts. When it comes to trend analysis across multiple deals, our powerful filtering tools allow you to iterate through quantified data-analysis findings as you see fit.
The Sentiment Analysis Engine:
- Holistically quantifies qualitative feedback from Win/Loss interviews.
- Captures both customer preferences and relative performance across deal-outcome drivers.
- Visualizes data from the interviews themselves, supported by related direct quotes.
As part of a Win/Loss analysis for a long-term HR solutions client, Fletcher uncovered issues with inaccurate internal coding of reasons for losses driving the client to revamp its coding and the methodology of recoding loss data. It also spurred further work on parsing out product versus service deficiencies.
In working with an international business services provider for over a decade, Fletcher’s Win/Loss analysis identified some key triggers that indicated a higher likelihood of a target customer switching providers. Our client leveraged this research and had Fletcher conduct blinded lead qualification interviews to identify the strongest prospects for its sales team.
Fletcher’s Win/Loss efforts over several years for an educational software provider across its varied product set revealed that its specialized approach to account management and sales weakened its cross-sell effectiveness. Fletcher’s recommendations enable the company to modify its engagement and tactics to expand its portfolio penetration with its clients.
An IT security SaaS company was in a fast-growth market, with one dominant competitor at the time. The market was considered a “land-grab” opportunity, with the first solution selected usually staying long-term. The company needed to increase wins over the competitor in both mid-market and Enterprise customers as fast as possible. Fletcher executed a “sprint” of over 20 in-depth interviews with customers and prospects, with individual reports and a strategic summary analysis report, presented to the executive team. As a result, Fletcher’s strategic analysis report provided clear insights for sales enablement to overcome objections, maintain pricing and margin, and find attack points against their main competitor. The company has now been successfully acquired, and the relationship between Fletcher and parent company has now grown into an ongoing partnership, as the fast-paced market needs continual analysis.
A global enterprise software company had a wide solution portfolio, was growing through acquisition and market share gains, and needed to increase wins in their Global and Enterprise sales opportunities across the organization. Fletcher initiated a Win/Loss Analysis pilot program for targeted customers and prospects in specific markets. The program included individual in-depth interview reports and a strategic summary analysis report with actionable insights from the pilot, suitable for the C-Suite. The program provided insights for executive strategy and sales enablement, causing the company to renew an annual win-loss program covering multiple product lines, geographies, and target markets. The annual program has been in place for multiple years, driving sales growth and product innovation. The findings from our strategic analysis reports have identified competitor topics (functionality, pricing/bundling) for further competitive analysis, which Fletcher presented to executive leadership of the company. The company has expanded its share of their Enterprise and Global markets, with significant double-digit annual revenue growth over multiple years.
Strategy Workshops are a powerful method for considering external factors in the strategic planning process across all organizational functions. Workshops are a valuable way for key stakeholders to meet in a structured, facilitated manner to examine strategic options. Fletcher’s workshops include war games, scenario planning sessions, and competitor simulation events.
Fletcher has been facilitating strategy workshops for over 30 years. We have both in-person and virtual solutions. We provide the briefing book, framework, and analytical tools for successful strategy sessions.
Whether it’s better understating competitor capabilities and likely actions, navigating uncertain industry shifts, or developing new products, or entering new markets, Fletcher helps organizations craft effective, data-driven strategies.
One important aspect of Fletcher’s workshop approach is our focus on the prioritized steps our clients should take at the conclusion of the session. Strategy is the means, not the ends.
We start out by meeting with clients’ strategy teams to understand competitive threats or which scenarios they wish to explore. We then develop briefing books with detailed competitor profiles for business strategy games, and scenarios for scenario planning. These books are used in the workshops as background and source material. The quality and timeliness of the competitor and market intelligence is critical to understand competitor capabilities and market dynamics.
The sessions typically begin an all-inclusive session to introduce everyone to the process and goals of the workshop. Alignment at the outset is key to ensuring collective success.
Participants then work in breakout sessions where they either wear the hats of competitors or focus on specific scenarios in order to strategize about the best courses of action. Participants leverage the source material in the briefing books along with their own knowledge of the competitors and/or markets to work though alternatives and likely competitor moves.
The workshops generally conclude with another full session, where the various breakout session groups present their findings and health dialogue amongst the total group takes place.
Post-workshop, we deliver a write-up with the identified competitor strategies and scenarios, action plans, and recommendations for clients to incorporate into their strategic planning.
Business strategy games allow clients to play the role of decision-makers at their top competitors. This leads to new insights about strengths, limitations, corporate culture, and other factors, and ultimately allows clients to formulate action plans. Scenario planning allows clients to explore a range of possible future scenarios that may pertain to a specific competitor or market, so they can develop strategies that address each scenario. Both types of strategy workshops give clients the intelligence needed to think outside the box and implement important business strategies.
One of the most important, often unappreciated elements of strategy sessions is inherent in their design – they bring cross-functional and multiple levels of organizations together in a facilitated, efficient program. Whether virtual or in-person, strategy sessions are one of the few times lots of people from across organizations work together in a non-distracted, common-purpose environment.
A Life Sciences client was facing a new competitive entrant with a novel MOA (mechanism of action) in an already competitive marketplace. The client needed to understand the competitor’s sales force size and strategy, and needed to play out how it, and the other top competitors in the space, would react to the launch. Several planning conference calls were held to discuss workshop objectives, timing, venue and technology platform, selection of participants, assignment of teams, and in-person vs. virtual formats. Additional calls were held to test technologies, obtain feedback on materials generated, and conduct dry runs in advance of the workshop. Secondary research was conducted using subscription and public data sources for briefing books, which were created for four top competitors. In-depth primary research was required to verify the new entrant’s sales force size and reporting structure, tactics, and expansion plans. Fletcher prepared a Competitor Simulation Checklist, a Workshop Agenda, and prepared an Introductory Workshop Presentation for all attendees. The workshop was facilitated by Fletcher’s senior staff members including our CEO, Senior Vice President, Life Sciences, Director and Associate Director, Life Sciences, and our staff Pharmacist. Fletcher analyzed all data derived from the workshop sessions and created a concise, easy-to-digest Post Workshop Report with an executive summary, completed workshop templates, and suggested next steps and recommendations. Our client was able to optimize its sales force, sales channels, and tactics, to effectively defend the new entrant’s launch during the COVID-19 pandemic. The client was also able to preserve market share loss from additional competitors. Based on the positive stakeholder feedback and outcome of the first workshop, less than 12 months later, the client chose to conduct a separate workshop for another key brand using a similar competitive simulation format.
Benefits of Virtual Strategy Workshops
Fletcher has developed a proven methodology that maximizes the time at the show or congress to produce the highest value intelligence. We provide daily updates, an executive summary just days after the show, and a comprehensive report as the final deliverable.
Fletcher has been covering trade shows across multiple industries for over 30 years. We’ve covered everything from small, invite-only sessions with less than 25 attendees to large, international conferences and congresses with over 50,000 attendees. Regardless of size or industry, our approach is consistent—we work with clients to create a comprehensive game plan for the show, collect intelligence through a mix of interviews, observations, and collection of materials, and deliver a report that’s focused on the intelligence topics and questions. We answer specific KITs and KIQs, glean competitive insights around positioning/messaging, new product introductions, etc., capture expert quotes, and collect marketing materials.
Fletcher has attended hundreds of shows, and we’ve established an approach that works. Our methodology hinges on a simple but effective concept—be organized and have a plan.
We start with a detailed planner, aligning with our clients on the most important presentations and sessions, booths, and other activities. Before the show even starts, we conduct preliminary research and try to answer specific questions. At the show, we typically provide daily updates of the key findings and realign on priorities if necessary. At the conclusion of the show, we produce a summary of the key findings, and conduct any follow-up interviews. The final deliverable is typically an executive summary of the key learnings, a comprehensive summary of all intelligence (organized by competitor or topic), and a complete handover of all materials collected.
Large amounts of aggregated data about a specific industry, market, or competitor helps clients and internal stakeholders make tactical and strategic decisions. This research can help inform both short-term and long-term business concerns. Additionally, the collection of marketing collateral helps clients refine their messaging and branding efforts.
A top global pharma manufacturer sought to better understand the infectious disease treatment paradigms in a specialized, post-procedural setting. Having attended hundreds of global congresses, Fletcher deployed a team to apply comprehensive virtual and ground support to scientific and clinical sessions, as well as to the commercial areas/exhibits, connecting with researchers, development scientists, key practicing specialists, and thought leaders versed in current and emerging therapies. Insights garnered by the Fletcher team allowed for the pharmaceutical client to better assess unmet needs in this category, understand associated complexities with patient care, scrutinize limitations to existing interventions, in order to ultimately, best position their launch treatment into this space.
A Fortune 100 manufacturer sought support in identifying early trends, disruptive market entrants, and M&A opportunities in a highly dynamic and rapidly growing segment of its business. Fletcher attended several industry-specific tradeshows around the globe to support the client in their efforts. Insights derived from the tradeshows revealed unique innovations in sustainable packaging and ingredients, advances in direct-to-consumer sales models, and highlighted new entrants with strong venture capital backing to monitor going forward. The client opted to make tradeshow intelligence an annual portion of their competitive landscaping to maintain insight evolution and continuity.
The power of Fletcher’s Market Intelligence Platform enables actionable intelligence to be filtered and extracted from hundreds of thousands of daily sources and unstructured digital “noise.” The result is that your teams’ analytical capabilities are optimized, allowing you to monitor and gain a greater level of understanding of the ever shifting ground of your chosen target markets.
Fletcher creates deep partnerships with all our clients around the world. Our specialists and consultants will work with you under NDA in order to understand your needs and priorities in order to establish the framework for your fully-bespoke knowledge portal. Fletcher offers a three month Proof of Concept (POC) stage so that your organization can establish the true value. The Intelligence Platform is dynamic and is supported by a dedicated team of analysts responsible for quality control, ad hoc research requests, and any additional insights that may be required.
Harnessing the power of award-winning technologies, taxonomies are created in accordance with your organizational lexicon. The platform then filters from over 500,000 global sources daily in order to extract, filter, and condense the content that is relevant to you. The content is then packaged and presented according to your design, enabling you to share with your colleagues around the world. This invites further knowledge and feedback from disparate sources, such as country managers and field-based research teams.
The result is access to a world class bespoke knowledge platform, designed and specified in consultation with Fletcher. The portal enables an optimized level of market intelligence, inviting further knowledge sharing, access to regular insights, opportunity identification and mitigation of external risks. The hybrid nature of the solution allows client access to a qualified team of insight analysts on a regular or ad hoc basis with further “deep dives” as required in order to support your key decisions. Sophisticated dashboards enable your stakeholders to monitor the usage and value creation.
A well-funded fin-tech based in the United Kingdom needed to gain a rapid understanding of their global opportunity as well as a greater understanding of the competitive intensity of their selected geographical priorities. After an initial consultation and primary based market assessment, a fully-bespoke market monitor—filtering information from over 700,000 daily—was created, and monthly market intelligence updates are now sent to their employees throughout the world. This intelligence sparked internal debate and further knowledge sharing.