In today’s competitive business landscape, understanding your position in relation to your competitors is a must for success. Strategic group maps are a powerful tool that helps companies to analyze and compare themselves to their competitors. In this article, we will dive into the importance of strategic group maps and how to create them.

What Is a Strategic Group Map?

Strategic Group Map

A strategic group map is a diagram that showcases the positioning of companies within an industry based on key strategic characteristics. These characteristics can include product features, target market, pricing, market share, and brand reputation.

By comparing companies with similar profiles on a map, businesses can gain a clear visual understanding of their competitive landscape.

What Is the Purpose of a Strategic Group Map?

Understanding the competitive landscape is essential for any business looking to thrive in their industry. Here are four key purposes of using maps:

Understand the Competitive Landscape

A strategic map allows you to assess where your company stands in relation to your competitors. By visually representing your competitors’ positions, you can identify the strongest players in the market and evaluate your own strengths and weaknesses. This helps you make informed decisions about how to adjust your business approach.

Discover Competitive Advantages

Analyzing maps can reveal valuable insights into successful strategies adopted by your competitors. By identifying patterns and similarities among competitors, you can pinpoint strategies that work and adapt them for your own advantage. This knowledge enables you to differentiate your offerings and gain a competitive edge.

Find New Opportunities

Mapping allows you to spot untapped opportunities within your industry. By analyzing the data on the map, you can identify gaps in the market that your competitors haven’t explored. This information can inspire innovative ideas for products or services, helping you expand your business and increase profitability.

Identify Market Gaps

Strategic maps highlight gaps in the market that your competitors may be neglecting. By studying the positioning of companies on the map, you can identify customer needs or unmet demands. This can help you tailor your offerings to fill those gaps, providing a competitive advantage and attracting customers who are not satisfied with your competitors.

Types of Strategic Group Maps

There are several types of strategic group maps that businesses can use to gain insights into their industry. Here are three common models:

Industry Life Cycle Model

This model categorizes companies based on the life cycle stages of the industry. It includes four phases: introduction, growth, maturity, and decline. By analyzing where your competitors fall within this life cycle, you can tailor your strategies accordingly to match the current stage of your industry.

Macro-environmental Analysis Model

This model examines external factors that impact businesses, such as politics, economics, and technology. By mapping these factors and how they relate to your competitors, you can anticipate potential opportunities and challenges. This understanding helps you adapt and stay ahead in a rapidly changing business environment.

Porter’s Five Forces Model

Porter Five Forces Model

Developed by Michael Porter, this model identifies the five key forces that shape industry profitability: industry competition, the power of suppliers, the power of customers, the potential for new entrants, and the threat of substitute products or services. By analyzing these forces and comparing your position to your competitors, you can assess your potential for profitability.

How to Create a Strategic Group Map

Creating a strategic group map involves a systematic process. Here’s how to get started:

Make a List of Competitors

To create a map, start by making a list of your key competitors. Identify the companies that operate in your industry and have a similar target market or offer comparable products or services. It’s important to focus on the most significant competitors that directly impact your business.

Choose Your Data

Once you have your list of competitors, you need to determine the data points you want to include in your map. Consider factors such as company size, product features, target market, pricing, market share, and brand reputation.

Select the data that is most relevant to your industry and aligns with your strategic objectives. This data will serve as the basis for comparing and analyzing your competitors within the map.

Create the Map


With your list of competitors and chosen data in hand, it’s time to create the strategic group map. There are many ways to create the map, depending on your preference and tools. You can use traditional methods like pen and paper or digital platforms and software specifically designed for strategic group mapping.

Creately’s tool provides you with a user-friendly interface that simplifies the process of creating your map. With a wide range of customizable templates available, you can choose the one that best fits your needs. Creately’s drag-and-drop functionality makes it easy to add and arrange elements on the map.

Start mapping out the relationships between competitors. Organize the map in a way that allows for easy comparison and analysis. Consider using different colors or shapes to differentiate competitors and highlight key insights. The map should provide a clear visual representation of where each competitor stands in relation to others.

Final Words: Strategic Group Mapping

In conclusion, strategic group mapping is essential for businesses to stand out in the competitive landscape. By using these maps, businesses can gain insights into their competitors, uncover new opportunities, and make informed strategic decisions. With the help of software tools like Creately, driving business success is more accessible than ever before.

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