Steal your competitor’s clients

1. Design a survey with questions about your competition’s customers’ needs and perceptions.

For example: What do you like the most about [competitor]? How does [competitor product] benefit you? How would you describe their customer service? How is their response time? How do you feel about [your product]? What would it take for you to switch?

2. Conduct the survey using Facebook Ads and target users who have liked your competitor.

Check whether those customers have a misperception about your brand, if they are not even aware you exist ,or simply don’t have enough knowledge. Click on the People section on your competitor’s actual Facebook page to get insights about their customers, like their city and age group.

3. Set up a Twitter search for all the @replies to the competitor’s customer service account if they have one, or to their main account if they don’t.

Monitor it on TweetDeck to gather competitive intelligence.

4. Set up an alert using a service like Mention to understand what the competitor’s customers are saying.

You will be notified of any mentions (positive or negative) the competitor might get across the internet.

5. Search [competitor name] intitle:forum in Google to see what questions are being asked and where these conversations are happening.

This will help you see the conversations in Unmonitored communities away from their branded channels.

6. Sign up to the competitor’s customer forums if available, and keep track of complaints or praises.

For example, you may learn that customers complain about the response speed of the product or a lack of customization. You can see how badly customer support is responding. Then, you’ll be able to highlight how your product resolved those problems and how your customer support is better, in a campaign targeting those customers.

7. Check the reviews and testimonials on similar products and use all this customer feedback to find where the competitor’s customers are having an experience gap.

Improve on it and implement these changes in your own business.

8. Create public comparison pages highlighting major differences in features and service between your product and the competitor's.

9. Run a campaign targeting the competitor’s customers.

Highlight your strengths where the competition is weak. Try doing it with humor, class, and honesty without falling into the trap of overtly negative competitive advertising.