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The Importance of Competitor Analysis in Digital Marketing Strategy

Elevating your brand above the rest means understanding your competitor as well as you understand your own brand. Competitor analysis isn’t just about keeping tabs on rival companies, it’s a strategic approach that empowers marketers to assess the current market, anticipate industry trends and find untapped opportunities. By investigating the strengths, weaknesses, strategies and performance metrics of competitors, businesses can stay a step ahead in the war for market share. 

Keep reading to learn more about the value of a competitor analysis, some tactic highlights and how to apply what you learn. 

What is competitor analysis?

Competitor analysis, sometimes called competitor research, is the process through which you discover the strengths, weaknesses, strategies and performance of the marketing efforts of the other players in your vertical. This type of marketing research can be turned into actionable data to adjust your brand’s marketing tactics and help your company better connect with the audience.  

Examples of competitor analysis tactics and how to use them

There are many different types of competitor analysis frameworks and strategies that can be employed to provide insights into your own brand as well as your competition. Here are just a few examples of approaches to competitor research: 

An oldie but goodie. A SWOT analysis stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. It can give important insights which are supported by data and examples from social media, website/landing page, reviews, market reports and other places.

How to use it? A SWOT analysis can help your brand learn about itself as well as competitors. This tactic is great at finding the strengths and weaknesses of competitors, shedding light on the entire landscape, and helping your brand find its own strengths and opportunities to highlight. A SWOT should be done for your competitors as well as your own brand.

Image Credit: SEMRush

Keyword research
This type of competitive research helps you find out what keywords your competitors are ranking for as well as your own keyword performance.

How to use it? This is good information to know for both search engine optimization (SEO) as well as pay-per-click (PPC) efforts. You can confirm the effectiveness of your current keyword mix and uncover missed opportunities to start capitalizing on those underutilized keywords and phrases. Also, if your competitor is getting a bunch of traffic from keywords that aren’t included in your strategy, you might start creating content around those topics for SEO and bidding on those keywords and phrases for PPC. 

Social media
Being aware of what is going on with your competition’s social pages is important. Take time to investigate follower count, engagement metrics, posting cadence, selected platforms and more.

How to use it? Check out what is performing for your competition and what isn’t. Perhaps they are getting lots of engagement through a specific channel or with a certain type of post. You might consider those for your brand. The goal is not to copy the same strategy, but to make posts that will connect with your shared audience. Conversely, if they are doing something that isn’t working, you might want to avoid that strategy or try a different approach. 

Customer journey map
This takes the process of how a customer interacts with a brand and turns it into a visual representation of the customer journey. It can help show how the target audience moves through the different phases—awareness, consideration, decision (purchase), retention, advocacy—and show the various channels that are touched.

How to use it? Another great opportunity to learn about your own brand as well as your competitor. This type of competitor analysis can give insights into customer pain points, engagement metrics, top-performing channels, where customers may be lost and how they are won over. 

Outperform the competition

Competitor analysis is a strategy that can help your brand stand out from the competition. It will help your marketing team make informed decisions, using the data gleaned from these tactics to enhance marketing efforts, finding where your brand is performing well and where there may be opportunities. By monitoring your major competition, you can adapt and strengthen your own marketing efforts to establish a deeper connection with the target audience and ideally earn a larger share of market. 

Remember, competitor analysis is not a one-time endeavor but a continuous process that evolves alongside your business and the media landscape. Leveraging newfound insights will keep you ahead of the curve and position your brand for sustained growth and success. 

Schedule a call with Beyond Fifteen today and see how we can help your brand complete a full competitor analysis and utilize the data found to improve your marketing efforts. 

Connect with a Beyond Fifteen Marketing Specialist today!

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