Gathering Competitive Intelligence to Create Sales Leads
Looking at your competitors to hone marketing strategies
For marketers and businesses just starting out, this is a helpful tactic that helps illustrate what generally works in the market space. Whilst you want to aim to create unique content that Google will see as of interest to viewers, do not underestimate the power of imitation and curation. We research the most commonly looked for phrases and subjects on Google, hashtags and other social media platforms, as well as Linked In, when looking at how best to focus on a client’s target audience.
You can gather competitive data by:
1. Signing up for newsletters & blogs
2. Following social media channels
3. Researching & reviewing competitor websites, analytics & ads, and by
4. Making purchases as a customer.
After looking at the competition, you can then start filling in content gaps in your own schedule. The content schedule is where the data that has been collected on audience and competition, internal metrics, and the company/brand objectives come together to produce content.
Here’s a thought, according to a report by Demand Gen: 61% of respondents admitted that they selected vendors who delivered a diverse range of content that affirmed each stage of the buying process. So, does your content cover the stages like: awareness, investigation, evaluation, decision and loyalty? If not, these are gaps that need attention.
For example; the content created for a newsletter, for us this is likely to be a video newsletter of course, will likely interact with previous customers or someone nearing the tip of the sales funnel. If customers have given their email address to a company they must really like the product and the brand so they are warm to you. The video newsletter can keep them interested in you by sharing relevant information that supports you as a thought leader in your industry and good place to go for up to date information.
If content is produced for a Facebook ad campaign, the people who will see the content may not know anything about the brand, so making the content lack the familiarity of newsletters and more generic makes sense.
Video newsletters address loyalty, and because of this it also makes sense to offer discounts or special features. Facebook content addresses awareness and investigation into a brand or product and should aim to educate, intrigue and excite the reader.
This is also a good time and place to reflect on buyer personas, these are the semi-fictional identities ascribed by a company to their audience. The more accurate the persona, the better it will be to map content and fill gaps.
Here is a list of questions from Business2Community that we find useful in helping to develop B2B personas:
• What are their job titles?
• What is a typical day like for them?
• What are their biggest challenges?
• What are their top goals?
• What is the job they need to get done-that only your solution can do for them?
• What motivates them?
• Who are their influencers?
• What are their buying behaviours?
And finally, it is now time to map out a video content marketing strategy over a calendar year. In addition to a yearly plan, map out a monthly calendar for day-to-day content and specific tactics. Content calendars, also known as editorial calendars, help to keep pace with content as things get started.