Acquiring Competitive Intelligence from social media is probably your first experience with Market Insight. The digital marketing sector uses the term “social data” to describe taking a look at your competitor’s social media witterings, memes and articles. 

Software

However, although 90% of self-proclaimed competitive intelligence software is a smart way to collate social media posts, it is relatively easy acquiring Competitive Intelligence from social media. And, not to say “oh that’s interesting” or “that’s not right”, but to use what you find to improve your social media and maximise your digital marketing efforts.

To do it properly, collecting the social media data and viewing their latest meme is only the start of it. Look for the trends, what your competitors are saying, and not saying. Ask the “so what’s” and why questions as Intelligence needs to help you with your thinking and approach.

There is a significant amount of noise within social media. So, it would be best if you did it systematically. Otherwise, you are going to miss an essential piece of information. Then you will want to see what similar products are doing to benchmark your efforts, gain insights from their customers and find a niche in the market just for you.

Monitor

So, the first thing to do is start monitoring social media using one of the many tools out there. And use these tools to monitor your competitors, their products and brands. Their keywords, features and target audience. Probably, you are already looking for your competitors’ backlinks, social media analytics reporting, and media moni­toring software to keep track of them. So take a look at questions like:

  • What are users saying about them?
  • What are your rivals saying on social media?
  • In which publications do they appear? Which journalists are reporting on them?
  • How good are their reviews?
  • Which websites are promoting them?
  • Which sites are linking to them?

Actions

In particular, look out for the following daily:

  • So, how are they marketing their product?
  • Do they have unhappy customers? Why are they dissatisfied? Are your competitors missing a trick?
  • And what are they doing with their content strategy?
  • Also, What bad reviews are they getting? What’s missing within their offering?

And, every week, ask:

  • Firstly, what are the most common complaints from their customers?
  • Also, what are they doing right? And what do customers like about their product?
  • What have you learned from them that you can put into your product?
  • What are they planning to do next?
  • Is their marketing having a positive effect? And why?
  • Which publications are they managing to get into and can you get the same press coverage?
  • Finally, what are the formal reviewing saying about your competitor? Are they highlighting missing features?

Then make a note of anything of interest. And try and analyse the data look at what you can do to exploit their weaknesses and manage their strengths. Above all, it is great to have all these monitoring tools, but data is not useful Intelligence until you have collated it, analysed and reported it. And importantly, take action on the proposed recommendations. 

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Here are some case studies too. Also, for more information on ethics within Competitive Intelligence from SCIP
 
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