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How to use historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages to define your digital strategy

· product feature,Competitive Analysis,Brand Strategy

In a competitive market where everything is changing, the competition is shifting; you should always questions yourself: where do we go from here, and which strategy will get us there? Should we fortify our strategic position, move into nearby markets or branch out into radically new territory?

For every marketers or business consultant defining the strategy is a difficult task and implies many components and tactics.

A good start for you is to learn from your competitors' past activities, with an open mind not with the intent of copying their strategy. “Even if you think you know what a competitor's strategy is from the outside, it can be very hard to copy successfully unless you know all of the individual details.” - Moz.

With Facebook as a dominant driver of social media traffic for new business, it is an excellent platform for the kick-start, and historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages could guide to the right path of the strategy.

Imagine that you are the community manager of Raiffeisen International Bank, responsible for the social media accounts for specific financial products.

You need to find out what ING Bank or Citi Bank communicated over the year. After reading the news section of their website, concentrate on their Facebook community and find out insights on how their user base reacted to their releases and what's the general impression about the competitive products.

Extracting the posts manually may take a while, but Social Insider could be a great assistant for you and deliver the whole history for every competitor.

Let the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages to define your digital strategy

Unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

#1. Find out what new products or services were launched last year by top competitors and how long they were promoted

As a community manager, this insight is valuable for you because it helps you understand what type of content you should prepare for the Raiffeisen Bank account, how long it should be and which type of posts should be boosted.

What type of photos the Raiffeisen’s competitors are using on their Facebook page? Illustrations or pictures? Which were the influencers who got involved in promoting their new product launch?

Unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

And most important, how did people react to this new product? Did they have a positive or a negative attitude? Select the posts with the sad and angry reactions and try to understand the customers' problems and how your competitors approached them.

Unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

#2. Identify the last year campaigns of the competition

How many of them were an internal, for their user base, and how many of them where external campaigns? Are their clients satisfied with their products? Analyze the data revealed by Social Insider and correlate these insights with the comments, shares or reactions for each post.

Unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

#3. Learn from your competitors' top problems

Is their mobile app working? Did they have problems with the Internet Banking? Are they responsive and helpful with the Facebook community?

Select the posts with the angry or sad reactions and try to understand why people are resonating with these feelings on the Facebook page.

Unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

#4. Get the list of the spear-hat products from your competitors

In general, the spear-hat products are the products with the most visibility in social media, and the products with a higher marketing budget. Facebook is more a place where you have to pay to play, so find out which posts were boosted and understood why they were boosted.

Unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

#5. Observe the social campaigns supported by your competitors

Are they promoting some sports event? Are they supporting a human cause?

Final thought: unlock the power of the historical data from your competitors' Facebook pages.

With that in mind, I’ll wrap it up. Always, have with you the What, the Why and the How attitude for setting up some clear goals:

  • What do we want to achieve?  Set the objectives.
  • Why do we want to get there? Execute your strategy.
  • How do we get there? Define your tactics.

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