3 Underused, Highly Effective, Ways to Use Competitive Intelligence
By now you know how important it is to be informed on your competitors’ moves and presence in the digital landscape. You’re probably gathering intelligence daily, but what to do with it all? How do you make the most of your time and efforts? To get the most out of your competitive intelligence, you need to consider not only of the content your competitors are sharing, but how impactful it is. Staying on top of what others are doing in your space helps you make the most of your own efforts, setting yourself above the competition. There are several best practices that will help improve your messaging, engagement and conversion.
Learn from Others’ Mistakes (and Successes)
Being able to analyze the performance of a competitor’s social content or ads is a huge time and budget saver. You can benefit from the results of their AB testing to create ads that convert, saving money in the process. You can gain insights on what types of posts are most engaging to craft messaging that resonates with your ideal consumer. Just as important, however, is knowing what doesn’t work.
A lot of time and hassle can be saved by understanding where your competitors have failed to resonate. It’s important to note that identifying what didn’t work is not enough; you need to understand why to avoid the same pitfalls. It may be more than just an issue of what content doesn’t work, but may also relate to timing. Perhaps it was a tone-deaf post in light of a news story, or a missed opportunity to tie in current events. Maybe content that performed well on LinkedIn tanked on Twitter. Avoid doing what has fallen flat with your ideal market and your company will appear more in tune with its audience. By that same token, if something is working great for the competition there is always room for you to make improvements.
Differentiate In Your Landscape
Keeping a close eye on what your competitors are doing and how they are positioning themselves allows you to really identify who they are (or want to be) and how you can set yourself apart. Know your voice and theirs to connect with your target market. It’s incredibly valuable to go beyond an analysis of the competition and take a close look at what you are doing to draw comparisons. Not only will you identify ways to shape your brand identity, you’ll also gain valuable insights to improve your product/services. This is a great opportunity to evaluate ways you can serve your customers in ways the competition can’t. Fill the gaps that exist in the marketplace and you establish authority in that space.
Don’t forget to keep an eye out for new competition entering your space. Competitive detection tools, such as Kompyte’s, can alert you when a company that may not have been on your radar begins targeting your keywords (and ultimately, your customers.) As the landscape changes, it’s important to adapt quickly to maintain an advantage. Your brand and approach should evolve with the market, without sacrificing your unique identity.
Share Knowledge Across Teams
Once you have a system for gathering and managing competitive intelligence in place, make sure you have an easy way to keep the rest of your organization up to date on your findings. Team members at every level can derive value from understanding your competitive landscape and how you fit within it. Sales teams, in particular, can gain a significant amount of leverage by using tools such as battle cards on their calls. Just make sure they are kept up to date and easily accessible.
It’s not just important for sales teams and marketers to be well-versed. Anyone speaking on behalf of the company should be kept in the loop. Customer-facing representatives can benefit from an understanding of the competitive landscape, similar to their sales counterparts, to retain customers considering a competitor. Product and development teams certainly need to know what is being released so they can prioritize and innovate. Consider providing weekly updates to stakeholders outside of the marketing team to keep everyone on the same page.
Competitive intelligence is a powerful tool and critical for dominating your space. Stay ahead of the competition by using their weaknesses to your advantage. Take advantage of their missed opportunities and position yourself as the clear leader.
Product Marketing Director
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