We live in a very competitive and fast-paced environment. Brands and Businesses must always be on the lookout for new ways and opportunities to gain an advantage in their industry.
And, One foolproof way to get the upper hand is by keeping tabs on your competitors.
What is the purpose of competitor analysis?
- Competitor research actually helps you learn from other’s mistakes, discover new strategies and grow your business.
- It also helps you recognize new opportunities.
- It shows why any competitor site has a good ranking than yours.
- Competitor analysis also lets you correct your own mistakes.
- It shows you what strategy works and what doesn’t.
To sum up, Competitive analysis in marketing lets you spot the strength and weaknesses of your competitors, enabling you to create better strategies.
How can you find the best competitor to target?
- List down your top ten competitors.
- If you haven’t identified your competitors, you can always google your “focus keywords” or the keywords that you want to rank for and note down the sites that rank at the top.
- You can also search for top performing content in Social Animal for your main keywords and note down the sites that have content with the maximum shares.
- Social Animal also lets you filter your results according to the TLD that you want. (Top-level domain classified into generic TLDs and country-specific TLDs)
How can you start performing competitor analysis?
Create Alerts to track Competitor Mentions
Step 1: Begin by setting up alerts that allow Social Animal to track and send you an email alert when any keyword, company, or brand that you want to track is mentioned online. You will also see articles that mention your competitors on your Dashboard.
Take a look at your Competitor’s top performing content
Step 2: When you type in your competitor’s website and choose the time period that you want, you’ll be able to see the articles that were shared the most in various social media platforms. Examine these in detail, paying attention to the type of content (Instructional, Listicle, News, Viral etc), length of the article, use of keywords, title tags, meta descriptions, and featured image which play a major role in optimizing content for search engines.
Step 3: You can also compare any two articles to see the similarities and differences. Notice the use of Keywords and the length of the article that has had the most shares. You might also want to look at the choice of words in the headline.
Step 4: Another thing that you must look into is the publishing schedule of your competitors. Social Animal’s Insights lets you see which weekday has had the most articles published and which weekday has had the most article shares. This information will be useful when you decide to create your own content strategy. Thus you’ll clearly know when and how to plan your publishing schedules.
Step 5: Check out your competitor’s overall performance in the Insights section where all your competitor’s articles are analyzed to tell which social media platform best suits you, title length that you should consider, the optimum length of the article and the perfect day to post your content.
Step 6: Compare your site with any competitor to see how you are doing. When you do this you will be able to see where you should improve to get better engagement. Here’s a sample that compares Buzzfeed.com and Boredpanda.com. When you look closer, it is clear that Buzzfeed uses Twitter to gain social shares, while Boredpanda uses Facebook extensively.
Step 7: Review your Competitor’s top performing content AGAIN to look at social shares
Use Social Animal’s Article search to get the list of articles that had the maximum shares. All you have to do is enter your competitor’s domain and choose “Shared in the past” option from the Advanced Search Filters. This will enable you to have a look at the top performing content and the shares they’ve got from each social media platform. This data will help you see what kind of content works best and where it’s gets shared the most.
The Final Step: Create a content strategy that outshines your competitors
When you are done analyzing, you can easily spot your competitor’s strength and weaknesses. You will also see the social networks they are focussing on. Here’s what you should do,
- Exploit a competitor’s weakness by producing content that covers topics which they haven’t touched or paid attention to.
- Create great quality content that can directly compete with your competitor’s top content. Make sure that you research and add more information. You can also create infographics and videos to make your content look better.
- Look for platforms or channels where your competitor has no presence or less activity. Try to build a following by posting content.
- Pay attention to the posts that aren’t ranking well. Try to create better content and optimize it.
Following the above steps will let you gather enough data and create your own content strategy. After this, you might want to look into the social media strategies of your competitors.
Did you know? Online Marketers believe that Facebook will soon beat all channels of marketing and become the primary digital marketing channel.
According to recent statistics, Facebook is the most commonly used platform by Marketers as it enables them to,
- Reach a Custom-targeted audience
- Get Maximum reach with minimal investment
- Interact personally with consumers
But marketing on Facebook isn’t that easy as you will need a working strategy to gain followers and likes.
To do this, you must analyze your competitor’s strategies on Facebook.
Now that you’ve gained competitive intelligence, you are required to monitor your competitor’s activities periodically. You should also know that you cannot blindly copy their moves or strategies. You’ll have to create your own to stand apart.
Remember: You have to be different to get noticed.