Competitive research in marketing is an important, but often overlooked discipline.
Using competitive research the right way helps you to avoid wasting time reinventing the wheel. There’s nothing unethical about taking inspiration from the ideas that work for your peers and competitors – you’ll still need to stamp them with your own perspective and expertise.
Luckily, it truly is easier than ever before to understand the competitive landscape. A huge amount of data on others’ marketing campaigns is available right at your fingertips. After all, the vast majority of digital marketing takes place in public, ready to be analyzed at will.
Here’s how you can do it:
1.Use Keyword Research Tools to See Where Rivals Are Winning
Keywords are the specific phrases users type into a search engine, like Google, when they have a question to answer or a problem to solve. Many different apps will let you review competitors’ highest-ranking search keywords and understand approximately how much traffic each one gets.
2.Evaluate High-Ranking Web Content to Add More Customer Value
Once you know which keywords are bringing in competitor leads, look at the top-ranking search content around those keywords. Here, you’ll find many weak spots: Short, poorly researched, or outdated articles. Each one you uncover gives you an opportunity to develop “10X content” – blog posts or videos that are ten times more helpful, useful, and informative.
3.Monitor and Evaluate Competitors’ Social Media Activity
LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook are all places where B2B firms conduct social selling – prospecting for leads and building platforms for their content. Follow competing pages, watch for activity on shared LinkedIn Groups, and use hashtag monitoring to observe peer enterprises.
4.Conduct a Usability Analysis on Competing Websites
Sometimes, the simplest ways are the best! Merely getting your team together to look at a competing site and comment on it can be enlightening. There may be marketing, sales, or design techniques in use that you never thought of before.
Competitive research in marketing has two main uses:
- Finding areas where a competitor is weak and your brand is relatively strong
- Revealing untapped opportunities that you can work on relatively unopposed
When you commit to learning everything you can from the others in your field, you’ll uncover new ways to communicate your value. That makes it easier for you to position your marketing to resonate with your busy and sophisticated B2B clientele.