Marketing and running a business can often feel like guessing and hoping for the right results. There’s a lot that you can learn from looking at the ways your competitors are marketing and communicating. Think like a customer and look closely at the methods of your competition. Here are 10 things your competitors can teach you that will help you gain insight and be more successful.
1. How to design your website
Having a trendy website that attracts the eyes of potential clients is a crucial way to gain more business. However, there are a lot of aspects to consider! Take a look at the website of others in the same industry as you to gain ideas for boosting your web presence. Here are a few things to look for:
- What’s your first impression? Is the site easy to manage? If so, then you need to look closer at what makes this true.
- Find out how they are hosting their site. WordPress, Squarespace, and Bandzoogle are all popular options for easy hosting and self-management. You can usually discover this by looking at the bottom of their site’s homepage.
- Examine the general layout. Make note of the menu locations and what information is included on various pages.
- Inspect the media they use. High-quality media is important for any website. Look at the types of videos, photos, or audio samples that they use to attract clients.
- Lastly, look at their booking process. How are they using their site to be booked? Check out their contact form and how easy it is to fill out as well as what questions they’re asking.
2. How to use email
Using an email list is a great and reliable way to keep in touch with past clients, fans, and those who are curious about what you do. If your competitors use a mailing list, sign up for it. By doing so, you can get an inside look at their marketing efforts, pricing, and sales that are being offered.
When examining your competitor’s emails, pay attention to the content they use. Most email lists include exclusive content, promotional offers, or some kind of entertainment that keeps fans subscribed. The substance they add to their emails can offer great insight into their success and give you some ideas for your own email marketing.
3. How to create a client-first experience
When dealing with clients, think customer happiness. Building better client relationships can lead to future success and make your gigs more enjoyable. While you can’t see and hear every one of your competition’s interactions with clients, you can look at how they build a customer-focused service.
A customer-focused service can take many different appearances. Look at your competition’s social media pages and website for client interaction and booking procedures. Showing support for client events on social media, creating an easy booking process, and offering guarantees can all be ways to ensure customer happiness.
4. How to interact with clients
More people prefer chat, text, email, and social media to phone calls these days. Your competitors are most likely using a variety of online communication methods. Look at their online presence to see the methods they use to invite potential clients to contact them.
The ways in which they communicate through these methods is also significant. Depending on your service, funny and relatable responses may be appropriate or a more professional tone may be preferred. By looking at your competitor’s communication practices you can get an idea of what works. Since you offer the same service, if it works for them it should also work for you!
5. How to use your social media
You can learn a lot about your competition by checking on their Facebook or Twitter profiles. Do they have more followers than you? More interactions? If so, look closely at the way that they’re interacting with their fans or potential clients.
Apps like Sprout Social or Hootsuite will even allow you to compare your social media pages to competitor’s profiles. Creating private lists on Twitter can also help you keep an eye on your competitor’s posts. Make note of those posts that get the most attention and what may have caused that to happen. The time of day, the day of the week, and any media that was used can all play a role in a post’s success.
6. What kind of promotional material works best
Look at what type of media is being displayed on your competitors’ websites and online profiles. Remember, try to think like a customer. Is there anything that stands out to you? Pay close attention to the media that catches your eye or makes you want to click and see more. If you’re looking on their social media pages, look at the images or videos that have the most likes, views, or comments.
We find that video is the most important form of media to potential clients. Look at what kind of videos are being used in your industry. For some, a live video is ideal while for others, a promotional video displaying the variety of services will be best.
Although online marketing is more prominent, tangible promotional materials are still widely used, and for good reason! Business cards, flyers, posters, and other forms of print advertising can attract potential clients in unique ways. How your competitors design their printed materials and the information they include, can demonstrate what is suitable for your industry.
7. What more you can offer in your act
Your competitors may be offering a variety of services or performances that you haven’t considered. It’s good to get out of your bubble and examine what others are doing to be successful. Read over their services or performance elements that they offer on their website.
Often, past clients will mention their favorite parts of the show or the ways the vendor went above and beyond. Read reviews left by their clients to see if there is anything you could do differently. Comments from their past clients can show you exactly what your clientele finds most valuable.
8. How to plan ahead
Knowing how to plan ahead for different seasons and when to employ various marketing techniques can be a challenge. As a certain season approaches, pay attention to the ways your competitors are adjusting their marketing. By signing up for their email list, you’ll be able to stay up to date on any seasonal changes easily.
If your competitors have calendars listed, you can also discover how far out they’re booking dates. This can give you an idea of what is possible for you.
9. How quickly you should be responding to leads
We find that those who respond to leads quickly are often the ones who get the gigs. If your competitors boast Top Performer status on GigSalad, then they’re responding to at least 80% of their leads within 24 hours. Facebook also displays a response rate on business profiles so you can see how responsive they are on social media.
Ideally, you want to respond to requests as quickly as possible. However, it’s reasonable to expect that responses may not always be immediate. Look at how quickly your competitors are responding to know what’s expected in your industry.
10. What not to do
Taking a closer look at your competitors not only shows you ways to improve but also what you should never do. It’s often easier to notice faults in others before we see them in ourselves. Because of this, you may notice things as problems that you never considered to be an issue.
Looking at your competitor’s social media, website, and online presence may provide you insight on what kind of marketing and communication techniques are unsuccessful. Save yourself time and trouble by making note of the problems you see. If a technique, post, or method isn’t working for your competition, it will most likely be troublesome for you too.