STEP 1: DETERMINE WHO YOUR COMPETITORS ARE
- Identify your competitive keywords - Choose the top 5 - 10 key words that have the most relevance to your business and Google them. Then check who appears in social searches for those keywords. You’ll quickly see who your top competition is online.
- Find out what similar brands your audience follows - Facebook Audience Insights and Twitter Analytics can give you some good insights into which other brands your audience follows on these social networks. If these brands are similar to yours, it’s worth considering them as potential customers.
- By now you’ve got a huge list of potential competitors. Narrow down your list of top 3 - 5 brands who you are most closely competing with on social media. Choose the brands that have the closest fit to your target niche.
STEP 2: GATHER INTEL
Click through the social networks of each of the brands you’ve identified as top competitors.
Make a note of the following:
- What social networks are they on?
- How large is their following and how fast is it growing? Who are their top followers?
- How often do they post?
- What is their engagement rate?
- What is their social tone of voice?
- What hashtags do they use most often?
- How many hashtags do they use?
Don’t forget to track all of these things for your own social channels. This will help you with your analysis in the next step.
STEP 3: DO A SWOT ANALYSIS
A SWOT analysis is a great tool to help you think clearly about all of this information you have gathered.
In a SWOT analysis, you take a hard look at your business and the competition to identify:
S - Strengths
W - Weaknesses
O - Opportunities
T - Threats
Strengths and weaknesses involve factors internal to your brand. These are things you’re doing right, and areas where you could improve.
Opportunities and threats are based on external factors: things happening in your competitive environment that you need to be aware of.
STEP 4: INCORPORATE THE LATEST DATA WITH SOCIAL MEDIA MONITORING
Social Media Monitoring is all about being aware of social conversations involving your brand, your competitors, and your industry.
Record any important information/events you uncover through social media monitoring and incorporate them into your revised opportunities & threats during your next review.
Tip: Facebook offers an analytics tool that allows you to keep track of several of your competitors. It’s called Pages to Watch. To access it, click Insights from your Facebook Page, then scroll down to the bottom. Once you add your competitors’ pages, you’ll be able to see their numbers for Page likes, follower growth, number of posts and engagement rate at a glance.