Why You Should Copy Your Competition

One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from running Facebook ads is this: you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

A lot of marketers want to be innovative and creative and think of something that’s never been done before or think about how they can position their product in a way that is totally different to anything else out there.

I’m not against creativity or trying to differentiate yourself in the market. In fact, I think it’s important to test new ideas and try to discover new angles that work.

But I’ve noticed sometimes marketers can get so caught up in trying to be different that they forget that sometimes the basics work. You don’t have to stress over trying to think of something that’s never been done before.

This is especially important when you are just getting started and don’t have a huge budget to burn on learning what works and what doesn’t.

Why would you waste money on random advertising strategies when you can start with what you know is already working?

I recently did a competitor analysis for a client where I analyzed the Facebook ads from 5 of my client’s top competitors. I visited the competitor websites and then for the next couple weeks took screenshots of every competitor ad that I was shown on Facebook or Instagram.

Then I compiled them all and noticed something interesting: they were all pretty close to identical. I made a list of all the main selling points and noticed that all the companies focused on the same top features in their advertising.

Why were they all running basically the same ad copy and images? Because that’s what was working. It’s more important to them to get sales than to have the most unique ads on Facebook.

And just because their ads are similar doesn’t mean that the companies aren’t unique from each other — each product still has its own branding, style, and unique selling points.

Another Facebook ad client of mine saw success with this strategy too. I created about 12 ads for her with different variations on positioning the product and wording. Then last minute I decided to add in one more that was inspired by the ads that I was seeing from competitor companies (yes, they were also all running similar ads).

Guess which ad outperformed all others by far? The ad that was similar to her competition.

If you’re seeing success with Facebook ads already then by all means keep doing what you’re doing. But if you’re not sure where to start with your ads, or not seeing the results you’d like then maybe you need to take some inspiration from what is already working in your industry.

Do some research, find out what’s working, and test everything! Because you never know what might be successful.

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