You Should be Watching Your Competitors’ R&D

You Should be Watching Your Competitors’ R&D

Posted by William Mehi on 11.04.19

Research and Development involves the researching of your customers’ needs, and developing new or improved products and processes to fit their needs. An R&D (Research and Development) strategy can lead to innovation, increased productivity and can boost your business's competitive advantage.

Competition is inevitable. Knowing who your business competitors are and what they are offering, can also help you to make your products, services and marketing stand out. However, simply knowing what they offer is not enough. Competitive research is completely legal, as it is simply collecting information available in the public domain. With the advent of new software and technology, marketers and business owners have the ability to know more about their competition than ever before. It is extremely important to regularly conduct a thorough competitive analysis in order to stay one step ahead. You can find articles written about companies in local newspapers and of course Google is a great resource. By simply "Googling" the type of service or product your company is offering, it is pretty likely a few of your top competitors will show up. 

Has your competitor been in the news recently, or maybe they hosted a big event? Following a company’s events and news will lead you to their media outlets and target audiences you may not have considered in your own approach. Signing up for competitors’ newsletters, receiving notifications of important announcements, watching for strategic pricing or product changes, provides you with critical information that can be used for your future R&D investments. Are your competitors on Facebook? Not only is it important to see if your competitors can be found on popular social media platforms, but you also want to take note of just how effectively they're using their profiles. Are they posting often and how many followers or likes are they receiving? Checking their content and utilizing or borrowing ideas from competition will help to establish your company’s presence.

Examples of Competitor Content to look for:

  • White papers
  • eBooks
  • Blog posts
  • Videos
  • Webinars
  • Podcasts
  • Slides/Power point
  • Visual content
  • Case studies
  • Social Media posts
  • FAQs
  • Feature articles
  • Press releases
  • Newsletters
  • Buyer guides

Once you know what type of research and projects your competitors are producing, it gives you a better perspective of where you need to put in more effort and resources with your R&D.

Federal research and development (R&D) tax credits can deliver an immediate and significant benefit to your company as a result of the innovative activities you are performing. The tax credit originally pertained to scientific research expenses, such as those occurring in a laboratory setting. Subsequent modifications have simplified the credit and made it available to a wider variety of businesses, including small businesses and new start ups. The activities your company conducts on a regular basis may qualify for valuable R&D tax credits. These tax credits represent a powerful financial advantage to businesses in a wide range of industries across the U.S., reducing tax liabilities and allocating cash back for reinvestment or other needs.

R&D tax credits can immediately benefit your company in several ways:

  • A source of cash for reinvestment or other needs within the company
  • Significant reduction to current and future tax liabilities
  • Credits can carry forward up to 20 years
  • Offset Payroll Liability

Now that the federal R&D tax credit has been made permanent, many companies can plan ahead with even more inventive ways to strategically plan, qualify and report their R&D expenses to qualify for the credit.

Request a free assessment to determine qualifying R&D tax credit eligibility.

Tax Point Advisors, a firm with expertise in working with small and midsize companies, works with businesses that may qualify for R&D tax benefits. For more information, call us at 800-260-4138 or please leave us a message below.

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