What’s your main competitor's most popular Facebook post from last week? Is it okay to spy on your competitors? Competitor research and analysis is an often overlooked part of brand marketing strategy. An easy first step is to set up a Google Alert for each of your competitors. If you’re using social media to market your business, a smart strategy begins with baseline competitor research and continues with weekly or monthly monitoring. An in-depth look will reveal even more intricate details. Try these three free tools to see how your brand measures up against the competition.
For Twitter users, the free version of Twitonomy gives an overview of any public Twitter user's history. You’ll be able to see detailed statistics, such as the percentage of total Tweets that are replies and which Tweets garner the most 'favorites' or 'retweets.' In addition to these Tweet statistics, you can also view when they tweet the most, broken down into days of the week and hours of the day.
TIP: Use this intel to find a time of day where your brand message can go toe-to-toe or hit the the sweet spot where your message won't have to compete.
Wildfire is a paid “social marketing software for enterprise” and is owned by Google. However, it does offer a free competitor tracking page for Google+, Facebook Pages, and Twitter. With data points placed onto a colorful graph, you can easily compare your social media activity at various date ranges. Facebook offers a similar service for Pages in the Insights tab within the last week, but Wildfire takes it a step further.
TIP: Use this intel to see how invested your competitors are across social media platforms.
3. Similar Web
Use Similar Web’s free service to see how your competitor’s social activity helped boost their website traffic. By typing in any web address, you can view their worldwide rankings, monthly traffic, traffic sources, and referring sites. Furthermore, the data provides you with a breakdown in traffic from social networks. In this example, 25% of Pepsi.com web traffic came from social networks, with Facebook providing nearly 80% of it!
TIP: You can download and share a PDF of your results and look like a social media analytics superstar!
There are many other tools available for competitor research out there. You do not have to read through each of your competitors’ Tweets and Facebook posts line by line. Start with these three free tricks to see the big picture. No time? No problem! Thin Pig Media can put together a social media competitive analysis for your brand, just drop us a line.