With 1.66 billion daily active users logging into Facebook every single day, Facebook provides a massive opportunity to find and connect with potential customers across the world.

But, what can make Facebook seem so appealing, is also its biggest downfall. Your competitors aren’t ignorant to the fact that Facebook is brimming with opportunities – making cutting through the noise and trying to stand out from your competition, even more challenging than it already is #DyingReach.

When it comes to the social media game, you want to be the one taking the lead, and that means you need to be one step ahead of your competitors. 

The fastest way to achieve this is by keeping an eye on what your competitors are doing on their Facebook Pages. Staying clued up on what they do, who they’re partnering up with and which of their posts are performing well gives you the chance to learn what works, stay on top of niche related trends and deliver the intel to refine your marketing activity.

Still not convinced?

Why you should be monitoring your competitors on Facebook:

  1. Benchmark: It’s difficult to really know if your Page is making any progress if you don’t have anything to compare it to. Yes, you should be keeping track of your own specific KPIs (key performance indicators) such as views and clicks. But if you really want to know how well you’re doing in comparison to your competitors, it’s really important that you’re aware of where the rest of your industry’s at and how your competition is advancing in comparison to you.

  2. Save some £££’s: Let’s face it. Spending money on ads or boosting posts can eat into your budget pretty quickly. A simple way to avoid wasting your hard earned cash on ads that don’t perform is to follow the ads your competitors are running. Keeping an eye on the comments people post on those ads, gives you a chance to see what their customers are saying – the good, the bad and the ugly. You can then leverage this information to quickly adjust your offering to suit the needs of your target audience and win the market. The best part? This information won’t cost you a penny.

  3. Learn from someone else’s mistakes: Lessons are a valuable way for us to figure out what does and doesn’t work, but why waste your precious time making them when you can learn from somebody else’s? Keeping an eye on the competition will help you to quickly gleam insights on what you can replicate on your own Page. Maybe you’ll learn what type of content resonates with your audience or what time of day is best to post. Either way, you’ll gain a competitive advantage and be able to grow much faster than if you weren’t monitoring their activity. 

Now that we’ve talked about why it’s important to keep an eye on the competition. Let’s talk about how you can do it.

The easiest way is to use the platform itself. Facebook provides you with built-in insights that allows you to ‘watch’ other pages to keep track of basic stats like the number of page fans, published posts and comments, shares and reactions.

To set yours up. Go to your ‘Facebook Page Insights’ and click on the ‘find pages to watch’ section at the bottom of the overview tab, then click on the ‘add pages’ button to start adding your competitors pages.

When you’ve set up your ‘pages to watch’, you’ll be able to spy on how often your competitors are posting, what their best performing content is and monitor how much engagement they’re getting. 

To do this, go to the posts tab, click on insights and you’ll be able to see ‘posts’ from the pages you watch through the top menu. You’ll see the list of the top five posts published within the last seven days, ranked by engagement – which is the total number of comments, shares, and reactions.

Keeping track of and creating a competitor analysis makes it easier for you to identify the best practices in your niche or industry and helps you to get a better understanding of what type of content is of actual value to your audience. Afterall, If you’re going to invest hours of your time creating content, you’re going to want to make sure your audience is 1) actually interested in it and 2) actually seeing it.

Although the easiest way for you to spy on your competition on Facebook is free, it also has its limitations. The metrics provided are basic and only give you insights from the previous week, so if you want to measure activity over time you’ll need to keep tracking it regularly (let’s say over six months) to really spot any regular patterns of behaviour.

Facebook competitor analysis tools

Fortunately, if you don’t want to waste too much of your valuable time tracking your competitors just so you can stand out on Facebook, there are some Facebook competitor analysis tools which can do all the legwork for you and provide you with deeper insights on your competitors actions.

1. Quick Search

Quick Search provides an overview of your Facebook page and that of your competitors. It allows you to get deeper insights into competitors Facebook pages that you can use to refine your own Facebook Page strategy. Some of its features include:

  • An overview of KPIs, such as volume, engagement, demographics and geographies.
  • Comparing multiple brands to evaluate your competitors
  • Creating viral content based on your audience’s activity

2. Sprout Social

Sprout Social is great for providing competitive analysis. It gives you a sneak peek at your competitor’s content and compares your growth against the average of your competitor’s profiles. You can also use it to discover how people feel about your competitor’s products or services, and adjust yours to differentiate it from them.

3. Sociograph.io

Sociograph.io is a free tool that allows you to spy on your competitors. It shows the average number of shares, likes and comments on a post as well as the top posts in a specific time period. It can also pull up statistics from the first day a page was created.

4. TrackMaven

Another great tool for Facebook competitor analysis is TrackMaven. It pulls data from Facebook and any other sources of your marketing e.g. SEO or Twitter. Some of its features include:

  • Comparing the performance of ads and organic content, including engagement, reach, clicks, impressions, referral traffic, conversions, etc.
  • Comparing your Facebook ad spend with competitors 

Final words

There’s no denying that Facebook can provide ample opportunities for business growth but if you’re fed up of chasing after the latest tips and tricks to optimise your Page or investing in ads just so you can stand out from the competition – there is a better way. Disciple offers a community platform that is ad and troll free. Your community has zero distractions, your content is guaranteed to land in front of your followers and you never have to worry about your competitors spying on your activity.