Conducting a thorough competitive assessment is vital for your businesses’ internet marketing strategy.
Yet many companies skip this important step and proceed directly to the tactical plan – the “what to do” section of a marketing plan. The problem with this approach is that you can’t know the best “what to do” unless you understand “why you’re doing it.” You also need to understand the gap between where you are and where you want to be, how long it may take to achieve your goals, and how much it may cost to get there.
And that’s where a good competitive assessment comes into play.
What Is a Competitive Assessment?
A competitive assessment looks at the industries, companies or individuals offering products and services that vie for your customers’ attention and wallets. Sometimes competitors aren’t who you think they are; it’s often surprising to find out who your customers view as alternatives to shopping or working with you.
Why Conduct a Competitive Assessment?
Knowing who your customers turn to when they turn to someone else and understanding the competitive landscape can help you position your products, prices, and promotional activities in the marketplace. Without conducting a professional and thorough competitive assessment, you may be making marketing decisions without knowledge of the big picture.
A competitive assessment can help your business:
- Understand where you are today in the marketplace. By knowing how you stack up against the competition, you can understand your businesses’ strengths, weaknesses opportunities, and threats better, and position your products and services more effectively.
- Identify the gaps between your business and competitors. A gap analysis finds the sweet spot between what you do and what your competitors do. Often, that’s the point at which a difference in the marketplace can be made, and customers can be persuaded to choose your products and services over others.
- Base internet marketing decisions on facts, not guesswork. When you have the facts about your competitors at your fingertips, you can make better, educated decisions about your marketing strategy.
- Set realistic expectations. While you can compete against any company, competing against an entrenched industry powerhouse requires a different level of commitment and resources than competing against a small startup. Understanding the landscape helps you set realistic expectations and sales targets.
- Establish marketing budgets. Establishing marketing budgets goes hand-in-hand with setting realistic expectations. You can compete against anyone in the marketplace, but competing against a well-funded industry leader is a very different scenario than competing against a small, local company. Knowing the size, aggressiveness and marketing presence of your competitors can help you establish an effective and targeted marketing budget.
- Create messages that stand out in the marketplace. If you know what your competitors’ messages are, you can differentiate yours, and make them stand out in the marketplace.
Now that you know you need a competitive assessment, it’s time to begin. Many companies find themselves stalled at this point. Who will lead the effort? Who has time? Fortunately, there is a solution.
Dashboard Internet Marketing offers professional competitive assessments to help you with your internet marketing strategies and plans. Our seasoned online marketing professionals can thoroughly analyze the competitive landscape and offer you valuable time- and money-saving insights.
Call 800-807-1852 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.