Content marketing isn’t just about selling your product – it’s a competition.
The odds are your product has competitors who offer a similar item. You and your company have to figure out how and why your product is better than the rest. If you’re a small business, this can be even more difficult when competing against the goliaths.
Content marketing can be considered a sport in this regard and one tactic that can be applied both in sports and content marketing is learning from your competitors. You need to have a strong understanding of your competition’s strengths and weaknesses, and learn from both their mistakes and successes. There are lessons to be pulled from both triumphs and failures.
It helps that most of this available data is easily accessible since it's online, and this will help you find strategic ways to capitalize in the content marketing space. You can also see areas where it may be tough to carve out space and pivot to less-crowded areas.
Here are some tips for how to outmaneuver your content marketing competition:
LEARN FROM THEM
To succeed in content marketing, you can’t pretend your competition doesn’t exist. You have to be aware of their presence, successes, and weaknesses.
This monitoring practice includes signing up for their blogs, newsletter, and social media channels, and tracking what they are doing. You can use alerts to help.
Social media is particularly important, and a content search platform like BuzzSumo can help you see how your competition’s content is faring in the space. You can learn about their social shares for their top pieces, along with the mediums that they are using. Perhaps they are focusing more on blogs compared to videos, while others may center more on infographics.
BuzzSumo Pro also allows you to see if they are using influencers. Using an influencer is not available to every business due to cost, but by knowing which influencers your competition is using you can see which individuals you should contact if you choose to follow this route.
If you wish to see how their social media channels are performing, you can use tools like Twitter Audit, Fanpage Karma and FollowerWonk, among others, to see their engagements.
Fanpage Karma is helpful for seeing how posts perform on Facebook, while Twitter audit helps weed out the fake followers from the legit ones on Twitter. FollowerWonk is a nice tool since it allows you to discover which of your competition’s followers have the most influence.
By understanding how your competitors are operating on social media platforms, you are setting yourself up to see where the biggest differentiators lie between you and them.
IT’S ALL IN THE KEYWORDS
You have to make sure you are using the proper keywords or you may be doomed.
Thankfully, search engine optimization tools like SEMrush and MOZ can help. They provide details on which keywords your competitors are targeting and using for rank, and how much of their traffic is organic compared to paid. You can also compare your efforts to theirs.
An SEO audit can be very helpful, and tools like Screaming Frog can help this process. This provides a more-thorough look at your competitor’s SEO practices.
If you are not faring well in the keyword space, it’s worth the time and effort to see where you can improve since moving up in the Google rank system can pay big dividends.
CHECK THE SITE
You will want to check your competitors’ sites and see how they operate. Are they fast or slow? Are they suited for mobile or not?
Using Google tools like PageSpeed Insights and Mobile-Friendly Test can help you learn more about both your site’s functionality along with your competitors. QuickSprout provides important rankings in several categories, and Hubspot Website Grader can provide useful metrics.
You also want to find out which links they are using to help with their rankings so you can potentially use those for yourself. Majestic is a helpful tool for learning which links are actually helping the cause, but you can research others that may be better suited for your needs.
You may even get some backlinks this way.
READ THE REVIEWS
You need to know what your customers are saying both about your company and your competition. Reviews on Google and Yelp go a long way toward building a reputation.
You can find out from these reviews the areas that your competitors are excelling in or failing, and the areas where you are thriving or slacking. People can be swayed by what others are saying about their product/brands, and you want to see where there is room for growth.
While this may seem like a lot, you can always pick out the areas that are more suited to your needs and budget. If you don’t have the resources to use paid tools, follow along with the tools that are free and still provide the information needed to learn more about your competition.
You need to constantly be learning about yourself and your competition to ensure you are the ones out in front and not left in the rear! Be sure to follow along at Digicom for more tips and strategies to help improve and upgrade your content marketing campaigns!
SO, WHERE DO YOU FIND THIS PARTNER?
Well, aren’t we glad you asked! DigiCom is a proud Facebook Marketing Partner. We’re obsessive data-driven marketers pulling from multi-disciplinary strategies to unlock scale. We buy media across all Facebook platforms and placements, provide creative solutions alongside content creation, and conversion rate optimizations. We pride ourselves on your successes and will stop at nothing to help you grow.