To plan an effective advertising strategy, you need to understand your competition as well as how your products fill the gaps that your competition doesn’t. Knowing who your competitors are, what they offer, and how they relate to the audience is an essential element in any advertising strategy. The reason is that your competition has done most of the work already. All you must do is figure out what they’re doing, and do it better in a little bit of a different way.

Find Out Who Your Competitors Are

The first thing you need to do is find out who is offering similar items to yours to the same audience as you. Don’t worry; competition is a good thing. If you don’t have plenty of competition, then there may be no business for you at all. Therefore, being able to identify the competition means that you have a good business idea.

What Products/Services Do They Offer?

If you can afford to do it, buy their product. You don’t want to copy it, but you do want to find out a lot of information, including how their customer service works and most importantly what the gaps in their coverage are.

How Do They Market to Their Customers?

What methods of marketing do they use? Get on their email lists, watch their YouTube channels, see how they interact with their social media accounts and in their email lists. Look for ads that they place and notice how they follow up.

What Are Their Prices?

How do their prices relate to what you think your audience can bear? Are they about what you thought they could afford, more expensive, or less expensive? Can you identify why?

How Do They Deliver Their Products or Services?

What method do they use, or software do they use to deliver their products or services? Can you sign up for these same services? Are they high end (Infusionsoft, ONTRAPORT) or low end (aMember.com, Wix.com, Weebly.com)? This can give you important information. If a business is using a high-end software system, it’s also possible they’re making high-end returns.

What Value Do They Offer?

Can you identify the specific value they add to their products or services that differentiate them from you? Do they offer a personal touch, a well-known name brand, or something else? If you can identify that value, then you can choose a way to be different.

How Do They Use Technology?

Not only how, but what? Do they automate social media messages, or are they very responsive in a personal way to things you say on their social media or things others say? Can you do better?

Survey Existing Customers

If you can identify certain customers of your competition, then it’s important to find out if you can talk to them. You can use Facebook Marketing to target their customers with a survey to find out more.

Once you name these things, how do they relate to your product or service? How well do you know and understand the value of your own product or service in a way that helps you differentiate yourself from them? This information will help tremendously with your advertising strategy. The more you know about the competition and the more you know about their products and services, the more you can please your audience.

Understanding the Competition
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