Ok so I was reviewing the logs and the search terms and found people were finding us for "bendable widget" in the serp's and I also saw "bendable widget" was a popular term for the internal search engine. I created a page specifically for "bendable widget" and two months later it's in #3 in the SERPs. So after florida I am #1 for it. So I look at the kei for "bendable widget" compared to "bendable widgets"
I've always found kei a useless figure anyway - prooved to be right again.
Same experience here. KEI is based on number of competing pages - which, to my mind, is often irrelevant.
I find that it's not how many competing pages there are - but who they are. I check the first few pages in the google SERPS and see who those competitors actually are.
Say I'm expecting my newly-created page to have a PR of 4. The first ten listings in the serps could have PR3 and not even be minimally optimized for the given keyphrase. Or the first ten listings could have PR6 and be highly optimized. Makes a big difference in the potential of the keyphrase.