Is your business on track for marketing gold?One of the key factors for business success lies in knowing who your competitors are and what they are doing. Facing up to strong competition can be a challenge; however, we believe that with the right research and analysis, you business can be armed with the tools necessary to achieve market dominance.
You may think you already know your competitors and what they are up to, but how often do you check their social media platforms, promotional material, website or customer service? Time and time again we speak to SMEs who believe they already know their competitors and that research is not a priority. We would have to disagree. Understanding how your competitors engage with your target audience and identifying what their strengths and weaknesses are, gives you a valuable insight into how you can improve your business. Competition can be fierce and in order to form sound business strategies, you need to have as much information as possible.
Ensuring your offering is different (in a good way!) is vital. If you don’t have up-to-date information about competitor activity how can you be sure you are?
So where to start? How about asking yourself these questions.
Who are your direct competitors? Have you actively searched for new companies that may have entered your market place?
Where are they located? Do you all operate in the same region?
What services do they provide? Have they introduced a new product offering recently?
Do they have an experienced team?
What about indirect competitors? Who are they? The watch market didn’t see mobile phones as a threat, now their market place is shrinking as people use their mobile to tell them the time.
What else might be useful to know?
Do they have an effective website? What content do they upload and is it updated on a regular basis?
Are they actively participating in social media? What content are they sharing and what platforms are they utilising? Are they effective users of Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn?
Do they have a USP? Are they providing a service or product that you are not?
Have you mystery shopped them?
Are your competitors publishing regular press releases?
Is there a news or blog function on their website? What are they talking about?
Do your competitors advertise, if so, where?
Do you know what terms they are optimising their website for?
All this may seem overwhelming, but preparation and research are vital within a crowded market place. Your findings will help shape winning marketing strategies that help drive future business success.
So if you can’t answer many of the questions above….start researching you competitors today.