Every marketer and business owner has a ‘healthy’ obsession with the competition. Not only is it morbidly fascinating to see what they’re up to – it can be very constructive.
Good news on that front: Facebook has launched a new feature that’s going to allow us to see our competitors’ Facebook advertising for the first time ever.
Of course, the new feature wasn’t technically designed for this purpose… but marketers will be marketers.
Facebook intended it to be used for “greater ad transparency” (yawn) but the bottom line is that we can now see the ads being run by any company’s page, at any time. Woop woop.
Aside from satiating your curiosity, taking a look at your competitor’s ads will allow you to analyse how they’re approaching their social media marketing. It’ll allow you to get a sense of the most successful brand’s offerings and the key selling points they’re highlighting in their ads.
You obviously don’t want to replicate exactly what they’re doing, but you can certainly use it to see how your ads measure up, find things you could improve on, see what your competitors have chosen to focus on (or not focus on) and whether or not it would be wise for you to compete head-to-head with them, or find an area they have left untapped.
You can also use it to see which ads they’re testing and which of those tests perform best (because you’ll typically see the most successful iteration of the ad being used a lot longer than the less successful versions).
All very interesting and useful stuff – especially for small businesses and those still trying to find their feet in the realm of paid social advertising.
To make use of the new feature, simply navigate to the competitor’s page (on desktop – the feature doesn’t seem to be available on mobile yet). The menu on the left-hand of your screen will now contain a new section titled ‘Info and Ads’. Click there and happy sleuthing!