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learn from competitorsThey say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but if you’re looking to grow your business, it may also be the smartest. While you shouldn’t completely copy what your competitors are doing, you should take the time to see what’s working for them as there is a good chance it will work for your business as well. Here are five tips to help you out.

1. What channels work best?

Marketing is expensive. Part of successful marketing is figuring out what works and then doubling down on that while eliminating anything that’s not. Checking out your competitors to see what channels are working best for them can lessen the guesswork on what will help your business. If your competitors are successful on Instagram and YouTube, then you should try those channels as well.

2. How to use social media

Checking out your competitor’s social media accounts will let you know what channels they’re using, the type of content they’re sharing and what’s getting the most customer engagement.

You can also see how they’re using social media and then apply those methods to your business. Are they primarily using it for customer services? Are they sharing more brand content or do they use it as a content aggregator? Once you’ve studied what they’re doing, you have a blueprint of what to try for your business.competition social media

3. What content works best

According to the Content Marketing Institute, 88% of B2B marketers are using content marketing as part of their marketing strategy. Choosing the right content and distribution channels is critical if you’re looking to execute a successful content marketing campaign. A quick search will let you know the kind of content your competitors are using (blogs, listicles, video, etc.) and how well their customers are engaging with it. Once you’ve found your competitors’ successful content, you can create an even better version for your content channels using the Skyscraper technique.

4. What marketing mistakes to avoid

It’s often easier to spot your competitors’ marketing mistakes than successes. When studying your competitor’s marketing, take note of what they’re doing wrong and then do the opposite. Did they do something to upset their customer base? Was a marketing campaign a complete failure? Use their misstep as an opportunity to target their customers with your better execution.avoid mistakes

5. Best PR opportunities

Are your competitors getting press on other blogs, digital magazines and offline media? If so take the opportunity to pitch the same publications on a story about your company. The more eyeballs you can get in front of the more opportunities there are to create new relationships, gain more customers and make more sales.

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