Regardless of your industry, your business has competitors. They could be more established companies, or they might be newcomers. Either way, when working on a social media strategy for your business, you’ll want to monitor your competitors’ social accounts. A social media competitive analysis involves evaluating your competition to learn their strengths and weaknesses, and how those compare to your own. By measuring your social media presence against others’ in your industry, you can identify both opportunities for growth as well as strategies that are (and aren’t) working.
Tools of Social Media Competitor Analysis
To figure out how your competitors use social media, you first have to identify who they are. Start by making a list of the ones you know, then turn to Google. Search keywords relating to your products or services to find similar companies. For example, if you have a pizza restaurant, add the name of the possible pizza places around you, and other restaurants that serve Italian food. Then, figure out their websites and which social networks they use, like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
When evaluating your competitors’ social media accounts, take note of these metrics:
- How many followers do they have?
- How often do they post?
- What type of visuals do they use— static images, videos, or both?
- What is their engagement rate?
- How often are they being mentioned, retweeted or reposted, and by whom?
- What hashtags do they use?
Other social media tools such as Socialbakers, Sprout Social, and Hootsuite can streamline your competitive research and offer powerful, in-depth analysis that helps you make sense of all the information. These tools make a wise investment for your social team because they give you the data that you can’t see by looking at your competitors’ profiles as a visitor. You can also use these tools to produce regular reports or manually track metrics in a spreadsheet or template.
Make sure to track all of the social media metrics above for your own business, as well. That way, you can compare them month-over-month and year-over-year to identify trends and keep on top of your strengths and weaknesses. Notice what efforts improve your metrics, and which have negative or no effect.
What You Learn from a Competitive Analysis
The purpose of a competitive analysis isn’t to copy exactly what others are doing on social channels. Audiences prefer relevant, engaging, and unique content. If you are too similar to your competitors, it will be obvious and less likely for customers to follow both accounts. Instead, find what makes you special and craft your strategy around that.
However, some social strategies will have similarities, like which social networks they use. If you’re a B2B business, you shouldn’t invest time and resources into a platform like Tiktok. Instead, focus your energy on Facebook and Linkedin. Pay attention to the platforms where your competitors are most active, and how they are posting and engaging on those platforms.
How a Competitive Analysis Should Inform Your Social Strategy
Look at your competitive analysis and make note of any areas where your numbers differ significantly from the competition. Then, use that information to adjust your social strategy. If your follower counts are low, consider running targeted social media ads to grow your community. If their engagement is higher than yours, take a look at the type of content they’re posting and try to incorporate similar content into your social media calendars.
Partner with a Social Media Agency
Even with the help of a social media competitive analysis tool, the discoveries of your analysis can be overwhelming. You see that your follower count is down, but what are the best ways to increase it? Or, you may think you have excellent content, but your audience is not interacting with your posts. How and what do you need to do to fix that?
An agency partner with a team of social media experts can help you craft a strategy that fits your brand and your goals. Our social team at Bayshore Solutions has the knowledge and experience to pinpoint your social media needs and suggest customized solutions so you can get an edge on the competition. Ready to get started? Contact us today!