4 Ways to Monitor Your Competitors' Strategies

How well do you know your competition? Not just who they are but how they operate, what works for them and what doesn’t?

4  Ways to Monitor Your Competitors' Strategies

How well do you know your competition? Not just who they are but how they operate, what works for them and what doesn’t? Overlooking your competition would be a massive mistake when developing and refining your own digital marketing strategy. But don’t worry, in this blog you will learn 4 very simple ways to monitor your competitor's marketing strategy.

What is a digital marketing strategy?

A digital strategy is basically your plan for maximising your business through the use of online and digital channels. Whether that’s your website, social media, SEO, advertising or email and automation, having a clear digital strategy will help you get ahead of the competition.

So how do your competitors fall into this?

Like you, your competitors will likely know the benefits of digital marketing. In fact, they might have spent hours researching your market and developing a strategy that really gets results in your market. It makes complete sense to exploit that.

As a marketing agency, we get to experience working in lots of different industries and understanding how different strategies work in each. One thing that we often find is our clients didn’t realise their competitors were doing x, y and z and haven’t even thought about doing it themselves. Then are often shocked by how well that works in their industry.

So how can you find out what strategy they are using? It's not as simple as calling up and asking for their secret but with the tools available today it is easy to do. Here are four simple ways that you can monitor your competitors.

Track social media activity

Follow their pages! Keep an eye on the sort of content they are posting, how often they are posting and the engagement each post gets. If your competitors are all using Instagram and you’re not you might be missing your target market by not using it.

Also, be aware that their strategy for one channel may not be the same for the other, they may use Twitter to post news updates and engage with potential clients, and Instagram may be used to demonstrate how great their company culture is (79% of job applicants use social media in their job search.) By doing this you can benchmark your social results against the competition and start to understand what works and what doesn’t.

It's also a great idea to get familiar with each platforms analysis tool – LinkedIn has recently introduced its competitor analysis tool which is similar to the Facebook Pages to Watch feature. These tools are so effective when positioning yourself on Social Media.

Become a customer…

This may sound a little backwards but how can you truly understand your customer's pain points without experiencing that buyer’s journey? Subscribe to their newsletters and blogs, sign up for product updates, read product reviews, even buy the products or services. Get a feel for their online customer service and look at what your competitors offer. Find out what’s good and what’s bad, then copy the good things and avoid the bad, simple but so effective.

Using Google alerts

Google Alerts is a free tool that you can use to keep an eye on your competitors' marketing strategies. For example, you could search for ‘Marketing Agency Leicester’ and by using the filters you could set up regular updates when a discussion is taking place about that topic.

Once you’ve set this up you will get great ideas for trending content, and you can keep an eye on when your competitors are posting content and what they are posting about. A good idea would be to subscribe to your competitors and your own to help benchmark.

Using SEMrush.

Another incredible tool is SEMrush, it is an essential tool for monitoring competitors’ digital strategy. Not only will you be able to identify the keywords and SEO techniques your competitor uses but you’ll also likely come across new competitors that you didn’t even know were a threat. It’s so hard to summarise SEMrush as the tool really is brilliant and offers so many great features, but we strongly recommend you check it out. Sign up for the free trial and have a go with some of the tools available.

By doing these simple things you can start building an effective competitive analysis which in turn, will lead to an effective digital strategy and result in more business now that most consumers are online. If you would like some advice, please don’t hesitate to get in touch to have a chat with one of our specialists!