To effectively utilize technology to build your brand, you need a digital marketing strategy.
How Marketing Has Moved Online
In years gone by, marketing experts loved to laud the “5 Ps” (product, price, place, promotion, and people) as the pillars of marketing and the “3 Cs” (company, customer, and competition) as the framework for marketing strategy.
Online marketing revolves around “5 Ds” (digital devices, digital platforms, digital media, digital data, and digital technology). As exciting as these are, this article is going old-school and starting with your competition.
Now you might say that you want to focus on being true to your brand rather than worry about others. But comparing competitors’ strengths and weaknesses to your own:
- Identifies gaps in the market
- Reveals strategies that are working
- Highlights how you can outrank, outshine, and outperform the competition
- It keeps you on track and ahead of others in your industry
- Strengthens your online presence.
What it’s not is replicating their e-marketing strategy.
Who Are Your Competitors?
Direct competitors compete in the same market to sell the same product or service and fulfill the same customer need, for example, Coca-Cola and Pepsi.
Indirect competitors compete in the same market but offer different products or services to satisfy the same customer need, for example, Coca-Cola and Nespresso.
Online competitors don’t necessarily offer a similar product or service, but they compete for the attention of the same ideal buyer persona.
What Are Your Competitors Doing?
Once you have identified your competitors, dig deeper into their digital marketing efforts:
- Explore what social media marketing strategies, messaging, and visuals are working for them.
- Track their PPC efforts and plan your spending accordingly.
- Use tools to assess the organic performance of your competition – SEO trends, keyword performance analysis, site speed, and so on.
- Establish what digital assets and content marketing they are using in the buyers funnel.
- Identify how your competitors convey their competitive advantage and juxtapose their unique selling proposition.
- Assess their online reputation management.
Leverage Your Findings
Cast aside ideas that do not align with your brand’s values, positioning, offerings, or goals.
Update your efforts where necessary. In an ever-evolving landscape, minor tweaks or significant changes can make the difference between success and failure.
Share your insights with other departments that may benefit from this competitive intelligence.