Having a competitive patent intelligence system can help you mitigate risk of infringement and identify your competitors’ technology and capabilities. Using a variety of tools can help you determine your competitive position, as well as identifying emerging or disruptive technologies that could be of interest to you.
Comparative benchmarking analysis of various competitors
Compared to your usual day to day operations, a benchmarking study can be a great way to gauge your company’s health and growth potential. It also helps you identify opportunities and risks in the market.
Competitive benchmarking is a multi-pronged approach that assesses the size and scope of your competition. It can be a boon to a new start-up or an established player looking to reinvent itself. In addition to helping you decide where to invest your precious cash, a competitive benchmarking exercise can help you identify and improve upon the aforementioned strengths and weaknesses.
It is a best practice to perform a competitor benchmarking study within the first three months of your business plan’s inception. It can also be a useful tool for staying one step ahead of your competition.
To make the most of your study, be sure to include a wide array of competitors. This includes your own competition as well as companies in related industries. For example, if you’re in the food and beverage industry, your competitors might include a major food distributor or a small artisanal brewery. If you’re in a highly specialized field, it may be worth it to find out who’s the big dog in your industry. This can be a valuable learning experience that can benefit your business in the long run.
It is worth noting that you won’t be able to find all of your competition’s patents and patent applications. In order to do the heavy lifting for you, you can use artificial intelligence to crunch through your competitors’ patents. This can be a great way to get a better understanding of your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses and develop a winning game plan.
Identifying leading or disruptive technologies among the huge number of patents worldwide
Identifying leading or disruptive technologies is an important step in the technology transfer process. This process can be a highly efficient and rapid one. However, not all innovations are disruptive. A technology change can only be considered disruptive if it has the potential to drive a major change in the business case model. This may include a decrease in materials, energy, and labor or an improvement in the current manufacturing method.
Some of the most common ways to identify technological breakthroughs are to review company inventories, scan journals, and perform market research. These methods may be more reliable than unprocessed patent data.
Using NLP, it is possible to develop alternative measures to measure novelty, impact, and the like. These can be developed from keywords extracted from patent claims, titles, or abstracts. Among the traditional metrics, however, correlations between the measures are generally low.
For example, the number of words in a claim is a useful measure of novelty. Likewise, a keyword search in the title of a patent can be used to develop a novel measure of impact.
The old standby, the patent filing velocity chart, can be useful in estimating activity levels in a technology area. In conjunction with related product sales data, these charts can be used to predict activity and understand the commercial phase of a technology.
The high-level patent landscape map is another useful tool. This map can be analyzed to better understand the technical area, discover white space opportunities, and communicate to non-patent experts. These maps are also a good marketing tool.
Creating a patent dataset
Creating a patent dataset for competitive intelligence benchmarking is an essential first step for any business attempting to assess the IP strengths and weaknesses of a competitor. Without the proper information, executives will be unable to make appropriate business decisions.
There are several ways to collect patent data, including the use of free patent databases and dedicated software. Both can provide insights into a competitor’s innovation strategy. However, there are significant differences in the types of information provided by the two sources.
One example is PatSeer, which provides a comprehensive set of tools and technology mining capabilities to analyze hidden technologies across large patent datasets. The company also provides an alert system that can identify threats before they can harm an organization.
Another tool is Google Patents Public Datasets, which connects public and private patent data. The data sets measure patent claim breadth, and offer pre-grant publications published through 2020.
Other sources of patent information include IFI Claims, which is an aggregator of raw patent data from 40+ patent offices around the world. The company updates the data frequently, and offers robust language translations.
Other methods for organizing a patent dataset include using patent classification codes. A patent classification code can be used to organize patent data based on filing date, patent classification code, owner, or broader search terms. Depending on the objective of analysis, the categories can change.
A third technique is to examine the connections between patents. This is accomplished by looking at the citing-to-cited relationships between categories. The European Patent Office (EPO) has created a new global patent map, which uses an overlay map technique to locate the relative technological positions of organizations.