Digital Market Research: Must Know Strategies For Brands

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My favorite saying when it comes to digital marketing is “if you’re guessing, you’ve done something wrong”. You should absolutely never be guessing regardless of what digital platform or channel you’re running ads on.

So my goal for today is to show you how to remove all the guesswork by leveraging digital market research strategies and tactics. And to quickly let you know, I am saving the best strategy for last.

Social Media Marketing: Competitor Research

So the first digital market research tactic I want to show you relates to social media advertising (Facebook and Instagram). As you can see, I’m just on the Casper Mattress Facebook page and you don’t even need a tool to do this.

I’m gonna scroll down a little and click page transparency see more and then I’m going to click go to add library.

Now, thanks to the Cambridge analytical scandal, anyone can see all the ads that every single Facebook page or business are currently running.

So presently, Casper is running approximately 100 different ads and you can see that they are running ads on Facebook or Instagram, etc. You can click through and play the videos.

Now what’s so exciting about this is again, you do not need a paid tool to perform this type of digital market research.

So if you are either currently running a paid social campaign, or if you are thinking about running a paid social campaign, a great first step is to see what the competition is doing.

And what you’re looking for is themes. If there are themes across competitors or within a competitor, it’s likely a good sign that it’s working.

And that’s a great place to start your paid social activities.

Google Ads / Google AdWords

The next digital market research strategy I want to show you relates to paid advertising on Google ads or Google AdWords. So paid search ads, I’m using a SEMrush but I’ll also include some free tools, but I do recommend subscribing to this tool if you want to do some in depth paid search research.

And what I’ve done, I’ve just entered in a URL that I picked at random. And as we can see, they’re running a lot of paid search traffic and spending a decent amount of money on it.

Now I wouldn’t focus so much on the total traffic cost because that is not always terribly reliable. But what I am interested in is what keywords is this brand or business bidding on and we can easily see that here.

So as we look, we can see they’re bidding on a number of brand related terms. They’re also bidding on competitive related terms. And what’s really interesting here is if we mouse on over the ad portion, we can actually see what that ad looks like.

So if you’re thinking about running a paid search strategy, whether you’re optimizing one or getting one started, a great first place to start is to see what keywords your competitors are currently bidding on and what ad copy they are using,

Again, if you’re seeing similarities across the competitive landscape, it’s a strong sign that you should probably consider this keyword within your paid search campaign and strategy.

Organic Search And Keyword Research

The next strategy I want to show you relates to organic search, what people are searching on Google and I’m using a tool named Ahrefs, it is by far my favorite organic search and keyword research tool. I’ll include some free tools in the description, but I highly recommend subscribing to this tool if you do plan on doing some in depth keyword research.

In this example, I’ve just typed in the word workout and what’s so great is I can see how many times a month it’s searched. I can see how that’s trended over time. I also can get a sense of difficulty. And by country, how often is this term searched?

But what I’m most interested in is what terms are being searched that are related to this initial keyword workout.

So as an example, I can see the top questions are, what to eat before workout with the after workout, what’s the best time to work out, etc, etc.

So I really like this tool, because it gives me a really great sense of what consumers are actually searching on Google and online. And the better I understand that, I can use that data to inform product page copy, I can use that data to inform my article strategy, my video strategy, and the list goes on.

And of course, whenever we’re talking keyword research, we’re really interested in seeing what the competition is doing. So if this brand here is a competitor to our brand, I’m curious, first and foremost, how has their organic search traffic trended over time? Yes, you can see that you can actually see every single keyword that they’re currently ranking for the rank of over 70,000 keywords.

And then we’ve got my favorite view here, top pages. And this shows the top keyword that each one of these particular pages is ranking for. So we can see here they have a blog, and it’s ranking for the term ‘lip scrub recipe’ which is searched 1,800 times per month and they’re in position one.

So why is this important to us whether you’re thinking about copyrighting product page optimization, things of that nature, whether you’re thinking content strategy, there is no need to guess because you can see every single term that is being searched online, you can see all the questions related to that term. And you can also see every single term that your competition is ranking for.

So with all that data combined, you can develop a very data driven content and SEO strategy. And again, you should never be guessing.

Amazon Research

As mentioned, I saved my favorite for last. That’s Amazon digital market research.

So I’m just on I typed in vitamin C serum. I’m going to pull up my Jungle Scout Chrome extension tool, and this tool is amazing. It does cost money but it’s important to note that with Amazon you’re going to have to pay for some tools.

There are free tools but they’re not very good. So I can’t recommend them.

And I can actually see how much revenue each one of these products is making per month… 161,400, 58,000, etc. You can do this by keyword, you can do this by brand.

So whether you’re trying to determine total addressable market, whether you’re trying to do competitor research to see how a competitor is doing in relation to how you’re doing, you can do all of that on Amazon. It’s amazing.

But using another tool, Helium10, which I’ll show for just a second, I can actually take one of the ASINs (or SKU) that showed up. And I can see every single keyword that they’re ranking for organically.

So for the term best vitamin C serums, which is searched 397 times a month on Amazon, I can see that they’re currently in organic rank position one, so they’re ranking number one when you search that term, but I can also see that they’re bidding on that term, but when they bid on that term, they are only showing up in position number 10.

So again, there are a number of tools and they do cost money here. But whether you’re thinking about an Amazon strategy, a DTC strategy, it does not matter. You can use these different tools to understand how much revenue every product is making on Amazon, you can see every single keyword they’re ranking for organically, how many times a month that keyword is searched, and you can see every single term that each product is bidding on.

If You’re Guessing, You’ve Done Something Wrong

So instead of guessing, making assumptions, reading an article… dive into the data and let that inform your strategy.

So to go back to my favorite digital marketing, saying, if you’re guessing you’ve done something wrong, as you can see, there’s an immense amount of data available from what our competition is doing to what consumers are doing online.

And if you are not conducting digital market research and using that research to inform your digital marketing strategy, I can guarantee you’re leaving a lot on the table.