Using Your Competition to Your Advantage

Using Your Competition to Your Advantage

Online marketing can be cutthroat. A large number of businesses compete for the same market share. As it turns out, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Marketing competition can be a winnable game, since having some stiff competition can provide excellent resources to hone your strategy. You just need to know how to access and apply them. Here are a few you can use to boost your company’s appeal.

 

Learn From Others’ Mistakes

The internet is forever, which means any mistakes made online are long-lasting. While this may be a tough blow for those making the mistakes, others can benefit from seeing them.

Marketing Strategies

Sometimes seemingly innovative advertising ideas end up being a disaster. Remember Dove’s commercial that played on racial stereotypes by turning an African-American woman into a white woman? While this was obviously a terrible idea to anyone outside looking in, someone had to approve it. Several people, in fact.

Everyone has blind spots. Your company may have a marketing idea that’s actually problematic, but no one realizes it. Before you invest in something that may cause outrage, research to see if someone else has done it before. What was the reaction? Is it the kind of reaction you want? The internet is the great archive of poor judgement. Learn from others’ mistakes to avoid your own.

Organizational Weaknesses

The world wide web also gives you access to competitors’ customers — and their complaints. Tweeting at an organization is now a common method customers use to get better service. Often, those posts are public.

It can take some time to scroll through a competitor’s timeline, but it’s well worth the effort. The online space is a goldmine for identifying potential weaknesses. Are there complaints about the hold times for customer service? Is a certain product not fulfilling its promises? You can increase your business’s value to these customers by providing what your competitors lack.

 

Identify Potential Followers

Marketing is all about getting your company in front of the right people. One of the great questions is how to figure out who the “right” people are. You can try to reach the largest audience possible, but that may not yield the best results. You’re probably better off targeting a focused group that’s likely to become customers. Fortunately, you can readily identify these groups by what they follow online.

Check out your competitors on the four biggest social media platforms:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube

These sites literally provide lists of people already interested in similar offerings. Want a bigger slice of the marketing pie? First, learn about the demographics of these followers. Then, use that information to grow your own.

 

Find Your Niche

No matter what products or services your business offers, you want to stand out from the crowd. When it comes to the online space, being “superior” just isn’t enough. Customers expect a brand to offer them something no one else can — sometimes in surprising ways.

Take FabFitFun. This subscription box offers fitness, beauty and self-care items. This is not that unique, as subscription boxes go. It’s even one of the more expensive options. So, what is FabFitFun selling that makes it an industry leader?

Unlike other subscription services, FabFitFun has focused on building an online community. In other words, subscribers can communicate online and access exclusive content that makes them feel like members of an elite club. This isn’t directly related to its products, but it’s obviously a need customers want fulfilled.

Look at what your competitors are offering. More importantly, look at what they aren’t offering. Is there an empty space you can fill? Are there services you do better than anyone else? Is there a thirst for a new voice or approach? Applied correctly, this marketing strategy can help you innovate and energize your campaign.

 

Follow (and Start) Trends

The internet thrives on trends. Some are silly (such as the Hundred Layers Challenge) while others are dangerous (remember the Cinnamon Challenge?). All are attention-grabbing and over in a flash.

Jumping on the trend bandwagon can be difficult, but it’s not impossible. The key is to enter the fray early. Identify an innovative idea that’s easy to replicate. Then put your own spin on it. Internet users are already familiar with this idea (they’re called memes) and gravitate toward them. The best result is when other users take your work and share their own versions, thereby expanding your visibility.

 

Analyze Their SEO

SEO can be tricky to utilize to its fullest potential, especially if you’re just starting out. Fortunately, the internet gives you access to competitors’ SEO strategies.

Pay attention to other organizations’ online reach. Who is ranking high in search results? Who is generating organic links? Analyze these companies’ marketing to learn what keywords they’re using.

You can even use software like SpyFu to track competitors’ online presence. This includes information on their advertising purchases and Google listings.

 

With all the information the internet provides, your competition may be one of your best resources. Boostability can help you apply online marketing knowledge to grow your influence and customer base. For more information, call (800) 261-1537 or visit the Boostability website.

Boostability
[email protected]