Have you thought about following your competition? Your followers keep up with your content because they find it interesting or they identify with your personality or with your brand. Now, do you know what you can do to attract even more followers or keep engagement with your current ones?
Well, there will usually be someone more successful than you whom you can turn to in order to figure out what your areas of opportunity are.
In order to follow your competition, you must first identify who your competitors are. Based on your current growth goals, you can identify your main competition. For example, if your goal is to reach 10,000 followers, look for other profiles that have reached that goal and have similar content to yours. If your goal is to generate very intricate home décor DIYs for example, look for profiles that have the type of content you would like to create. You can search for your competition independently or by searching your follower’s profiles. Your competitors can be bigger than you currently or have a high-growth potential.
Now that you’ve identified and started following your main competitors, it’s time to analyze them and find out what makes them successful. View all of their posts, then monitor how many likes and what comments they are getting. It’s also important to monitor their follower growth periodically (weekly for a fast-growing account or monthly for a slower account). What topics trigger growth? Do videos lead to higher engagement than photos? How often does your competition post? What day and time leads to the highest engagement?
The answer to all of these questions will help you identify your areas of opportunity and also what things you are already doing correctly. The tracking is the hardest and most tedious part but it is essential to gaining success through researching the competition.
Based on what you’ve now learned about your competition and its factors for success, you now have all the tools to develop a new strategy. If you’re an up and coming presence, you may have gained some inspiration from the larger player’s posts as far as topics, shooting angles, or interaction strategies. And if you’re a larger player, you also learned from the smaller up and comers and what is making them grow at such a fast rate. Based on this, it is time to make tweak your strategy and implement it. It is important to not lose your original essence or to copy exactly what the competition is doing. Remember that your followers are attracted to you for who you are. Use what you learned simply as inspiration to enhance what you’re already doing and not to completely change your channel.
After implementing your new strategy, follow up with some self-tracking. Did the new and improved strategy gain you additional followers or bump up your engagement? If it didn’t, don’t be afraid to continue researching and trying new things. Research always increases your chances for success but success is never guaranteed.