How to draw inspiration from your competitor – Authors' Guilds

How to draw inspiration from your competitor

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August 15, 2020

How to draw inspiration from your competitor

competitor

On days you are not feeling incredibly creative; you can get some inspiration from your competitors. Getting ideas from your competitors doesn’t necessarily mean they produce a better result; it’s only a means to observe what they lack and improve on it.

You can use their ideas to understand their strengths and weaknesses, learn from their approach, and use what you’ve learned to develop strategies that will improve your content and create brand awareness.

To get inspiration from your competitors, you have to through their contents, both online and offline. You could get inspiration from their blog, social media, email marketing, loyalty program, FAQs, reviews, ad campaigns, and so on.

However, when trying to get inspiration from your competitors, avoid direct imitation as that is plain stealing. You can use content to inspire you to create something unique for your brand, but don’t copy content directly. Here are areas you can get inspiration from your competitors.

You can get inspiration from the content your competitors have created by taking a look at their website and observe how they have structured their topics, headlines, intros, etc., which makes you want to click to see more of the content. 

What kind of images do they use? Is it personal photos taken by professional photographers they hired, or do they use stock photos? Do they include videos, webinars, infographics, quizzes, or anything extra that makes their content stand out?

Content

You also need to observe the personality they display through their content. Is it serious and professional, humorous, relaxed, formal, informal, etc.? 

Besides the content they have on their website, do they include other content for giveaways such as eBooks, whitepapers, analysis reports, worksheets, case studies, checklists, and so on? Do your competitors show off their worth through testimonials, including reviews and video testimonials, or do they include links to their reviews?

Through an in-depth analysis of the kind of content your competitors create, you can draft your content strategy and include what you think makes their content stand out.

Blog

If you have recently created a blog, and it seems like your creativity isn’t enough to drive organic traffic to your page, take a cue from competitors in your niche by visiting their blogs to see what they are doing differently. You can start by viewing the kind of topics they cover, how frequently they post, and how fast they respond to comments. 

Go deeper by checking each of their articles to see which generates the most comments. Also, check the organization of their blogs, such as how they use tags and categories. Find out if they allow guest bloggers and if it’s a regular thing or done occasionally.

Social media

Social media is one of the best places to get inspiration from your competitors since everyone struggles to create the best contents that will keep their audience engaged. You can monitor your competitors on social media, and luckily, there are lots of social media tools that make it easier. 

If you already have a social media plan in place, get ready to review it after finding out what strategies your competitors are using. Start by observing the social platforms they’ve concentrated their efforts on. You should also monitor the number of times they post each day. Then watch the type of content that gets the most engagement.

Reviews

In this area, you’ll discover two things; what your competitors are doing, right and wrong. We all know how people post online reviews without a filter. An aggrieved customer would not hold anything back when writing reviews, so also, a pleased customer would show appreciation while reviewing a product or service. 

So, one place to find inspiration from your competitors is going through their reviews. Find out what the reviewers are complaining about, whether it’s the quality of product or services, pricing, delivery time, customer service, etc. In the same way, check the key things they mentioned in a positive review to see if your brands are doing the same or not.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What have they added as their frequently asked question? Can you use them as a standpoint to generate FAQs for your blog? Or don’t you think it’s something to write about in your next blog post? You can use the questions to make a topic for your blog or create an eBook from it.  

How have they organized the questions? Is it in a list where you have to click to see the answers, or do each item come with solutions underneath them? What kind of questions did they ask? Is it about a topic or the general view of the business? You can always take the main idea in a question and restructure it in a way that will be unique to your brand.

Email marketing

In this area, you’ll have to do more than monitoring from the corner. You’ll have to get involved by subscribing to their mail list since it’s the only thing you can do to see how they construct messages to their audience. When you get the first email, which is the welcome message, note how they’ve built it.  

How long did it take to get the email? Was the headline compelling? Did they include their brand logo? Were there any added links? Was there an eBook giveaway? How frequently do they send the email? Is there a pattern to it?

When going through their emails, find out what compels you to open or read through them. Also, observe if they promote their products and services through emails and how frequently they do it.

Loyalty programs

Get inspired by how your competitors keep their customers happy and ensure their loyalty through different programs such as special discounts, contests, giveaways, and so on. See how they conduct their plans and the impact it has on customer engagement and brand awareness. 

 Check the attractiveness of the reward and if they are enticing enough to the customers of other competitors. Check how many times they offer free delivery services or how they choose winners of their contests in a month. 

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