Why Your Competition Is Your Best Friend In MarketingJames Cox
Know thy enemy. You’ve heard it before and its good advice. The same holds true for business. The fact is that your competition offers you a unique advantage. They already know what works and what doesn’t work when it comes to marketing. Take a look at any industry and you will see similar businesses running similar ad campaigns. The reason is because they copy each other based on who is the most successful. For example, if a company that sells car parts sees the best ROI from SEO, then you can bet that their competitors are doing it as well.
While it’s a big help to see what methods are successful, it can also teach you what may not work. This helps you avoid wasting thousands of dollars and month in campaigns that will not work. Not every method is going to work great for every company and it really depends on your industry. For example, if you own a car dealership then email, social media, display and banner ads may be best for you. However, if you are a local plumber then you need to make sure that you are easily found on Google. Understanding how each platform is relevant to your business is one of the keys to being successful.
So how exactly can you monitor what the competition is doing? For starters you can Google them, finding some information about what they rank on, what other sites are saying about them and even customer experience. You can see links to their blog, if they have one, social media sites and other places they are sharing their content. You get an idea of what content they are creating and sharing, how frequently they post, if they are boosting their posts and more. Take a look at the top five competitors in your area and make notes of what each one is doing.
You are going to have to fine tune your marketing strategy, but it doesn’t matter if you have been in business for ten days or ten years, you are never really starting from scratch. Looking at the competition and analyzing what they are doing is a great way to game plan what you should be doing. Also remember, just because something didn’t work for them doesn’t mean you need to avoid it. They may not have put enough budget behind it, had quality ads or content created or something else. That’s why you have to keep an open mind, not be afraid to fail but also not be afraid to take sound advice when you see it.