We are all familiar with the adage “keep your friends close and your enemies closer.” It doesn’t matter if your business is a start-up, an SME, or a big corporate company, the only way you can make it grow is by keeping tabs on your competition. You must closely observe their actions and strategies so as to stay one step ahead of them. When you monitor your competition, you will make sound marketing decisions based on how they operate.
How to Start Monitoring the Competition
To succeed in business, you must always know what your competitors are doing. Tracking them ensures you take advantage of opportunities, market effectively, increase your client base, and win in the marketplace. By performing competitive intelligence, you can considerably increase your profitability. Here’s how to do it.
Track Their PR Lists
When you know your competitors’ offerings, you can alter yours or create new ones. Many businesses announce new customers or partnerships through press releases. This is why it is so important to monitor press releases and the media coverage of your major competitors.
For example, with Oscilloskope you can to stay informed about your competitors. You can set alerts to go off when they post press releases, run promotional campaigns, or get media coverage. You can learn more about their current clients, potential ones, or markets they may be pursuing because of new office openings, product rollouts, or new hires.
Monitor Their Marketing Strategies and Content Strategies
Many marketers like to say “A marketer’s job is never done.” This is very true when it comes to monitoring your competition. Tracking every part every part of your competitors’ marketing including their advertising, website activity, promotions, and even packaging improves your business decisions and budgeting.
Besides monitoring your competitors’ marketing strategies, you could monitor their content strategies. You can identify their most shared content, their highest-ranking content, examine their keyword rankings, discover their best backlinks, and monitor content-related conversations. When you know what content makes your competitors’ blogs popular, you can brainstorm ideas for your own posts.
We are lucky today, you'll find a lot of digital tools for tracking your competitors. If you want to track their website and analyze what content perform best, Buzzsumo is a great choice. For all those conversations which happen around your business or startup, Oscilloskope is the ultimate online media monitoring app.
Find Their Best Backlinks
Searchmetrics conducted a study on Google ranking factors and analyzed more than 300,000 sites that appeared in the top 3 search results. One of the major discoveries was that relevant and high-authority backlinks have a major impact on a site’s ranking.
It’s very important to find out who’s linking to your competitors’ content and which of the links are the best. If authority sites link to your competitors’ content, chances are they might consider linking to your content if it’s good.
Read Brian Dean’s Skyscraper Technique and learn how to double your organic traffic in 14 days.
Search For Customer Complaints and Transform Them into Business Leads
Your competitors’ unhappy customers can be invaluable to your business. It is a lot easier to sell to them because they act on emotion, not rationale. You can attract and maintain them without going to great lengths because they desperately want alternatives. All they want is to get out of their bad situations. When dealing with such prospects, selling becomes very easy.
Search for customer complaints on social media platforms, competitor websites, and business review sites like BBB. Modern customers look for businesses that go above and beyond. If you do this, you will forge lasting connections.
Get Insights from Their Customers about Their Business Model and Improve Your Product Glitches
You can also monitor your competition by interacting with their customers. A competitor’s customers can give you a deeper insight into what the market values. They can also give you insider knowledge about your competition. You can use this information to create marketing strategies that maximize your competitors’ weaknesses and boost your performance. You can also assess threats posed by your competitors and update your products and services. Knowing what your competitors are offering helps you to make your offerings stand out.
Improve Your Communication
If you don’t talk with and to your customers, your competitors will. Talking with your customers refers to market research while talking to them refers to marketing. A lot of small businesses do not communicate with and to their customers, but successful companies do. They spend a lot of cash on market research and advertising because they know the value of communication.
If your competitors are more successful than you, there is something they are doing right. They may be sending texts to their customers to offer words of encouragement or to update them on crucial information. Such a small thing can make all the difference. It doesn’t matter how far your customers are, thanks to the Internet and mobile phones, you can reach them any time of day.
Learn From Their Successes and Failures
In an increasingly competitive market, you must continually look for ways to improve your business. One of the ways to do so is by learning from the successes and failures of your competitors. Doing this is easy thanks to the extensive information available on the internet. What you learn from your competitors might be responsible for your company’s growth. Pay attention to what they are doing so you can do it better.
Do Not Rely Solely on Google Search
While any research project these days starts with a Google search, it’s not the only thing you should do when monitoring your competition. Make use of the monitoring tools available to get interesting insights into your competition. Google Trends can help you to stay knowledgeable about your industry, to compare your company with others, and see where people go after visiting your site. Oscilloskope can send you notifications for your brand or startup as well as your competitors. SpyFu is another great tool. It shows you what Adwords and keywords your competitors are using.
Staying ahead of your competition is now more important than ever. The marketplace is overcrowded and you can’t survive if you don’t stand out from the rest. Even big companies fall out of favor (remember Woolworths, Polaroid, and Blockbuster?). Use these tips to monitor your competition and take your business to the next level. When you see the results, you'll be more than happy you did!
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