The annual habit in question? Performing a competitive analysis of your brand and your market.
Why is this important? Because when Sun Tzu said “Know thy enemy” in The Art of War, he was clearly referring to marketing.
IF IT’S NOT YOU, IT’S THEM
Just know: Someone is controlling your industry through positioning, so if it isn’t you, it’s one of your competitors.
HOW TO CONTROL THE MARKET
Unfortunately, you can’t control your competitors. You can, however, reposition your competitors in the market by placing a strong emphasis on your own brand’s position.
For instance, if you sell laptop chargers, and one of your competitors claims to have the most powerful charger on the market, they’re repositioning your brand as not having a powerful charger. This limits your brand’s ability to successfully message your product as powerful. But perhaps you decide to position your product’s unique differentiator as “The lightest laptop charger on the market.” What if you double-down on this claim with messaging such as,
“The only charger for people on the move.”
As a result, you’ve repositioned your competitor’s product as a big, bulky charger.
This isn’t to say that you should react to every competitor in your market — many won’t be “in your division.” You also shouldn’t react to every competitor’s attempt to reposition your brand. But it is important to perform an annual strategic competitive analysis to ensure you’re aware of what your competitors are doing.
UTILIZE THEIR OWN MARKET RESEARCH AGAINST THEM
How your competitors are positioning themselves shines a light on their own market research. For instance, you can potentially deduce what a new competitor’s data shows by how they’re positioning themselves, or trying to reposition your brand, in the market. The ability to leverage this information annually can really help to maintain your position in the market.
Here are 3 more reasons why it’s good to know your marketing enemies:
1. YOUR COMPETITORS ARE EATING UP YOUR MARKET SHARE
Never forget: If you’re not gobbling up the market, then your competitors are eating your share. Isn’t it time you did something about it? It’s time you arm yourself with the actionable insights offered through a deep analysis of your marketing strategy. It’s time to take back your lunch.
HOW TO TAKE BACK YOUR LUNCH
Perform an annual strategic analysis of your position in the market and take the temperature of your industry to always stay ahead of it. Know which new competitors are challenging your audiences. Dive into your competitors’ marketing campaigns to identify their long-term strategies, so you can position around them.
2. IDENTIFY MISSED OPPORTUNITIES
3. SET COMPETITIVE ANNUAL MARKETING GOALS
Weekly and monthly goals are great, but annual goals are better. They’re bigger. They move the needle when the needle needs moving. And they compete directly with the goals of your competitors.
Your annual marketing goals should fit the direction of your company, the direction of your industry, and your competitive landscape, and they should do it every single year.
Maybe you’d like to grow eCommerce from 3% of your overall sales to 10%? What subgoals does this require? How do you boost conversions and web traffic accordingly? Annual goals give your team a North star to aim for all year long and allow your managers to set specific KPIs. Plus, achieving your goals boosts morale and energy in the workplace, and who doesn’t like another opportunity to celebrate?
Set up a call with our team of marketing strategists and get into the right annual marketing habits.