All brands need to stay on top of the dynamics in their category. But if you’re honest with yourself, how much of your week is actually spent on competitor tracking?
When calendars get busy and workloads hectic, it’s the first thing to drop off the list.
If you don’t want to be caught off guard by your competitors, follow our guide to competitor tracking.
- Competitor tracking: What is it and why is it important?
- How competitor tracking is evolving
- Competitor tracking tools to use
- Why ProQuo’s competitor tracking is unique
What is competitor tracking and why is it Important?
The right kind of tracking can give you an edge over the market, helping you to:
- Keep up to date with movements in your category – Understanding where your competitors are focusing and identifying areas of opportunity for your brand to move into.
- Identify commercial opportunities within your market – Either by stealing market share from a key competitor or driving more penetration in your category.
- Grow relevancy – Are you addressing all the key consumer needs within your market? Could the brands around you be surfacing unmet needs you’ve not yet tapped?
- Create tighter retail trade stories – Using data to increase your distribution in-store by convincing buyers why your brand will drive more incremental category value versus your competitors.
How many competitors to track
There’s no limit to how many competitors you should be tracking but an average of 5-10 is preferable.
Modern Consumer Insights platforms allow you to track all of your competitors in one place. This is completely revolutionizing the competitor tracking landscape, making the process more efficient, as you don’t have to spend time collating data from numerous sources, as it’s already housed in one centralized location.
Types of competitors to track
Consider separating your competitors into direct and indirect.
Direct competitors exist within your category. These are brands that offer the same service. For example, Coke and Pepsi.
Indirect competitors are found outside your category. These brands offer different products but the need they are addressing or the audience they are targeting is the same as your own. For example, ready meals now compete with takeaways, as both address the same need – wanting to treat yourself at home with a nice meal.
In addition to considering direct and indirect competitors, you’ll also need a strategy for identifying when new competitors enter your market. New brands are being launched every day, so having an airtight plan of action for how to identify these brands and what to do when you’ve found them, is key to sustaining relevancy.
How competitor tracking is evolving
Currently, the most common competitor tracking tools and methods include:
- Social Listening – What people online are saying about your competition.
- Traditional brand equity trackers – Looking into your competitors on an ad-hoc basis via dips or large-scale competitor studies.
- Agencies – Hiring agencies to conduct reviews on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis.
- Manual methods – Researching your competitors on the internet, following their pages, and staying on top of their PR announcements.
However, each of these methods has its limitations.
Social Listening platforms are difficult to:
Large-scale studies, traditional trackers and agencies cannot provide:
- Real-time data – By the time brands receive these results, it’s likely the competitors will already have moved onto the next thing. In today’s fast-paced world, live data is a must. Additionally, the metrics used in these studies often differ to those you’d use to measure your own brand, which can make reporting and comparison more difficult.
Manual methods are:
- Time consuming and repetitive – A robust competitive analysis will often take hours out of a marketer’s day. It’ll show you what your competitors are doing but it won’t be able to show you how these activities are impacting their equity scores.
Additionally, none of these methods are:
- Proactive – Each method gives you a glimpse into the competition after they act. But by this point, it’s often too late to gain ground. A competitor tracking solution that puts you on the front-foot, enabling you to anticipate movements and trends before they happen, is a better option.
- Measured against true purchase intent – To understand why people are choosing a competitor over your brand, you need a solution that taps into your consumers’ emotional state. When you uncover the feelings behind these purchases, it’ll help you to know the real reasons behind purchase. You can then use this to your advantage to steal market share.
Competitor tracking tools to use
When selecting your next competitor tracking tool, here are some key things to look out for:
- Live data – So you can see in real-time how your competitors’ moves are impacting their brand.
- One set of metrics - Which you can use to track your competition and your brand to ensure consistency.
- Integration – A platform where you can integrate your competitor analysis with your brand analysis.
- Equity data – Not just knowing when your competitor makes moves but also being able to detect exactly how these moves are impacting their equity scores in real-time.
You can access all of these things – and more - on ProQuo AI.
ProQuo is a live consumer insights platform that helps you understand, in real-time, which of your marketing actions – and your competitors’ marketing actions - are working and why.
Every day, consumers’ emotional and rational feelings are tracked through a single framework – providing one integrated solution for tracking, testing and business reporting needs.
ProQuo is home to the world’s largest database of subconscious consumer feelings, making it the most intelligent marketing technology for measuring the true purchase intent of your brand.
Why ProQuo’s competitor tracking is unique
Instead of relying on ad-hoc competitor analyses, which can be slow to receive, time-consuming to complete, and siloed from your brand activities, why not embed competitor tracking into your business?
On ProQuo, you can access brand, competitor and category data, every day. Having a daily read on your competitors will enable you to spot changes as they happen, identify when momentum is building or slowing, and understand the impact of every move your competitors make.
Simply track their equity scores after an activation has gone live and you’ll know whether it’s worth considering a similar activity for your own brand.
The platform hosts all of this data on one clear dashboard, which makes it easy to compare your own performance to your competitors’. You can create charts and export data from the platform too, which helps with reporting.
All of the data runs through one consistent and proven framework – the 16 Drivers of Relationships. This framework is the only method that measures people’s feelings and thoughts in real-time. It’s integrated into everything you do on the platform – from tracking to testing your competitors’ creatives, and pulling reports on yours or your competitors’ performance.
And the best part is that once you’re set up, you’re ready to go. No more briefing agencies or waiting around for your competitors to make a move. On ProQuo, you’ll always be prepared, as your competitor dashboard will keep you up to date with the latest movements.
5 things you get with ProQuo’s competitor tracking:
- The ability to track as many competitors as you want simultaneously.
- The power to customize your package - Adding or subtracting competitors at any moment.
- System 1 at scale – A technology that can capture consumers’ feelings as well as thoughts.
- Custom questions – Ask your consumers’ any question, at any time, to find out how they think you or your competition are performing.
- Test any creative asset, at any stage of development - To identify the strengths and weaknesses of their latest campaign.
If you don’t believe us, why not hear from some of our customers?
The INKEY LIST - Using ProQuo to understand your category
Pip & Nut – Using ProQuo to see how you measure against your competitors
Work.Life - Using ProQuo to identify white spaces