[14 Step Template]

How To Do Competitive Analysis[14 Step Template]

Let’s face it, a “how to do competitive analysis” article is not getting anyone leaping out of their seat with excitement is it?

There may be some people out there who wake up in the morning absolutely pumped to research the life out of their competitors.

But for most of us it feels like a task reserved for the long finger or the “someday” list.

Here’s the thing though… For anyone who wants to build a successful brand, it’s a non-negotiable and something you simply must do.

Skip this step and the brand you build will lack a key ingredient of any successful brand…. Relevancy.

But it’s not all bad.

When you have a framework in place and you know the steps to follow, painting a picture of your market landscape becomes simple.

If you’re still not motivated to roll up your sleeves then know this… There is gold to be found in an effective competitive analysis.

When you have a clear picture of the choices your audience has and how they feel about those choices, patterns begin to appear.

These patterns represent gaps which are the birthplace of extraordinary differentiators and iconic brands.

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What Is Competitive Analysis?

With the number of businesses in the world clocking the 200 million mark, we’re not short of choices regardless of which product or service we need.

No matter where you are, how small your industry, or how specific your niche, chances are there are plenty of businesses offering the same thing to the same people, possibly at the same price.

Smart brands understand this and do the necessary due diligence.

They identify what their target audience already has in the market in the way of choices, and they specifically avoid offering the same.

They go out of their way to become the consumer and view the choices in the market from those consumer eyes.

They experience the market as the consumer, in order to fully understand the market landscape including where the market is served well and where it’s underserved.

Comprehensive competitive analysis provides brand builders the information needed to make strategic decisions by answering critical questions such as:

What opportunities exist?

What are the gaps?

How do we fill the gaps?

What are the market trends?

What features should we focus on?

What benefits do we promote?

How does our audience feel?

Where is our audience being let down?

How can we stand apart from our competitors?

Without an effective competitive analysis, the answers to these questions would be based on a guess at best.

Why Do You Need Competitive Analysis?

When you think about competitive analysis you can be forgiven for picturing a covert operation to penetrate your competitors guard to steal their secret sauce for yourself.

To be fair, we do go “undercover” as a consumer and may even speak to a competitor’s customer service as part of our due diligence.

But you don’t need to acquire a fake moustache and start ordering Martini’s “Shaken not stirred”.

There is no secret sauce to uncover and even if you found one, that’s not your mission.

Of course you want to understand what your competitors are doing well, but competitive analysis is more akin to geographical mapping than it is undercover spying.

Competitive analysis is part of your positioning strategy where the ultimate goal is to stand apart from your competition as a better option to service their needs.

Ultimately, you need effective competitive analysis to position your brand effectively.