Todays digital world is ruled by the influencers and brands who provide top quality content that impacts people’s every-day lives.
With the rise of social media and content creation, businesses everywhere are starting to realize that they are climbing an uphill battle when it comes to creating content that can both find and influence an audience. In order to do such, most companies watch what the “big guys” are doing and then simply duplicate that content on their own platforms.
But is this a good idea? Honestly, not always.
We recently released an article about 5 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD FOLLOW YOUR COMPETITORS ON SOCIAL MEDIA and why it’s a good idea to note what they are doing. This blog post is not attacking that article, but rather, it’s growing upon it.
Here’s what I mean.
You need to follow your competitors on social media but you cannot copy exactly what they are doing on social media.
Why is that?
Let me give you four reasons why you should not duplicate or replicate your competitors on your social media platforms:
1. People follow you to hear your voice, not someone else’s voice
If your followers want to hear what your competitor are saying, they’ll just follow them and not you! I know, not the most encouraging thought, but it is encouraging! If people are following you, it means that they want to hear you!
On the opposite side of that thought, chances are, your followers are also following your competitors, so they will know when you are copying what they are doing.
You have a voice. You have an insight into your industry that other people cannot see. You have a point of view that is only yours. Step up and speak your message!
Now, should you see what your competitors are saying on their platforms? Yes! It’s a part of the research process. Should you see why their message is performing better than your message? You bet! Take their principles and use them, but speak your message in your voice. People will thank you for it.
2. You will never be content with your own content
Design and style is ALWAYS changing. In fact, once you create something great, there’s already a different way to present that same content . . . which means your content isn’t so great anymore.
So what should you do then? Just sit with your hands in your lap?
Publish your content.
Did you create a video for a new YouTube channel? Publish it.
Did you create a graphic package for a social media campaign? Upload it.
Did you create some written content to start a blog on your website to boost SEO? Launch it!
If you are always waiting to only post the best of the best content and nothing else, you’ll never publish it. Stop comparing and start publishing.
3. People know when you’re trying to “Keep up with the Joneses”
Ever heard of that phrase before? If not, ask your parents. This phrase goes right in line with point two about not being content with what you have, but this idea also deals with how you treat others. In order to keep up with the Jones, not only do you have to make it look like you’re better than them, but you also need to tear other them down to build yourself up more quickly.
For example: We’re better than them because they’re awful and don’t like their customers.
Now, it may be true, but in this scenario, no one wins. Why?
When you stop creating to create but instead you create to compete, you’ve already lost.
This is one reason why Apple doesn’t focus on what their competitors are doing. Apple focuses exclusively on stories from their customers and how their devices will transform your life. Sure, Apple recognizes that there are other companies out there, but they don’t tear their competition down. They simply focus on their product, their people, and their customers. The result? Apple has created an entire ecosystem that other systems cannot touch (or are just starting to touch).
4. They don’t know what they are doing either
Honestly, we’re all just trying to figure this out at the same time! There are principles that you need to know regarding how to use each social media platform, but the best way to figure out what works for you and your followers is to try new things and test new ideas. After you try new things, check your stats and see what worked and what didn’t. If it didn’t work, don’t do it as much. If it worked, double down until it doesn’t!
When it comes to social media, you should know what your customers are doing to see why they are being successful in their efforts, but don’t just do something because your competitor is doing it. Find your voice, try new things, look at the stats, and repeat what works. It really is that simple.