Using GinzaMetrics and groups to beat your competitors

You deal with a lot of online content. You know that if people can’t find that content, it might as well be invisible. That’s why – as you know – it’s crucial to make smart decisions about how to target each ad and keyword campaign, in each location where it’s targeted.

Keyword, content and competitor groups as a strategy

Say you’re designing a campaign for a trail running shoe. Ideally, you’d like to know not only the top keywords related to trail running shoes overall, but also the top-searched features, services and brands in each of your target markets – and how search behavior differs among those markets.

In other words, maybe your target audience in the Seattle market frequently searches for shoes with responsive cushioning, while your target audience in Asheville, on the other hand, tends to search phrases like “most durable shoes for trails,” “long-lasting trail shoes,” and “Appalachian trail shoes for men.” The more clearly you understand those market-specific search trends, the more precisely you can target your ads and keywords to each group, create content that matches audience intent, and understand how to beat the specific competitors within each marketplace.

That’s exactly what GinzaMetrics does best. The platform gives you the tools to compare how features, products, and campaigns perform across markets – as well as which content and content types perform best for your audience. You can also drill down into how your competitor landscape changes for each feature, product, message strategy, and location. Even better: you can do all this on a budget.

It starts when you decide how you want to segment and target your marketing. Here’s how.

The power of groups

GinzaMetrics is great at partitioning and comparing campaigns, messages, features, products and audiences – not to mention content types, geographies, demographics and targeted accounts – across a wide range of locations and competitors. Plus, groups enable you to sort your data in ways that make sense to you – especially when you’re handling large numbers of variables – and to quickly generate meaningful reports.

*Check out our solution page on creating groups

Remember the campaign for trail running shoes? Say you want to analyze two types of shoe features: responsive cushioning and durability. Each of these features will become the basis for its own group.

Each of the two groups – the “responsive cushioning” group and the “durability” group – needs two core components. The first component of each group is content: the assets you believe are most relevant to that group. The second component is keywords: the most relevant words, phrases and product searches.

*Watch our Found Friday episode on strategies for creating content groups

In other words, the “durability” group might have content in the form of a landing page, a video and a blog post, plus a list of ten keywords related to durability. The “responsive cushioning” group, on the other hand, might have a different video, a different landing page, and a company interview for its content, plus its own list of eight different keywords.

Adding content to a group

It’s simple to add content to each group from your GinzaMetrics “Content Groups” panel. Once you’ve entered the name of the group at the top of the panel, the next step is to set up keyword-matching regex rules that will automatically find and add matching keywords, based on AND, OR and NOT specifications. This will also automatically add new content that matches these rules to the group.

You can also isolate subdomains, folders, and other types – for example, subdomains like /blog or  /trail-shoes/, or any other subdirectories you choose. Next, add content and targeted keywords manually to isolate URLs. This works for both onsite and offsite content. Then add keywords to the group – as soon as you add a keyword, it’s applied to all content you’ve added to the group.

From your “Groups” panel in GinzaMetrics, choose a set of target locations for each group. Next, enter a list of top competitors for that group, in each location. You can group competitors for easier filtering – sorting them, for example, into categories like “online retailers,” “brick-and-mortar retailers” and “publications.”

Repeat the same process for the remaining groups, and you’re ready to start comparing locations, audiences, competitors and more. We’ll dive into that process in the second article of this series.

The investigation into your data

The more clearly you understand how the content and keywords around specific features perform in specific locations, the more accurately you can target your campaigns, and beat out the competition in each market. That’s exactly the kind of analysis that GinzaMetrics does best.

In the first article of this two-part series, we explored the power of groups in GinzaMetrics. By creating testing groups around specific product features (or campaigns or audiences), it’s easy to compare the performance of content and keywords across geographies and demographics – and even to analyze the tactics of your competitors.

Now that we’ve walked through the creation of a group, it’s time to dive into the details and start generating brand-new insights.

Discovering new competitors

Once you’ve created your groups and assigned locations and top competitors to each group, GinzaMetrics goes to work to find out who’s competing against you. In the “Discovered Competitors” tab, you can select each of your groups from the drop-down, and see a list of top competitors for each group. Some of these competitors might even surprise you!

The spreadsheet will show you exactly how each competitor is competing with your content and keywords. They may be competing with specific features, products, campaigns or messaging – and while some may be directly selling products, others may be indirectly selling via catalogs or other forms of outreach. The panel makes it easy to group them in multiple ways, so you can understand their content and positioning more clearly.

It’s also simple to find the top competitors for a specific individual keyword or location. Just click the “keyword” box, and you’ll see the number of discovered competitors who use that keyword, along with its monthly search volume, competition score and rank. Click the number in the right-hand column to see the list of competitors who’ve been using that keyword. If you prefer to scope out your competitors by location, just choose a location from the group’s drop-down box.

Investigating competitors and keywords

Now that you know who your top competitors are, the next step is to check out their overlapping keywords, and see which pieces of their content are getting ranked highly.

Let’s go back to the trail running shoes example. As you might remember from the first article, we created a group around the “durability” feature. Within that group’s “Discovered Competitors” tab, you can click on the competitor “RunningShoesGuru.com,” and see its top-ranked content that competes directly with your own – in this case, two product pages that match your keywords.

From the “Discovery” tab of the “Keywords” panel, you can find new keywords by topic. Consider both broad and specific topics to see what recommendations are made – and look for “adjacent topics” to see if terms related to your product appear.

In the same way, you can find more keywords by content, using your own direct and indirect landing pages, or those of any competitor, to see what types of content resonate. These results can also give you great ideas for new content, emails, social media conversations, forum posts, and more.

Let’s wrap things up with another quick example. Say you want to find out how content related to durable trail running shoes ranks in different markets. Start by adding keywords about durability to a group, and keywords about trail running shoes to a group. These keywords can come from Keyword Discovery in GinzaMetrics, from your own list, or both.

Next, add locations relevant to your markets: Seattle, Portland, Asheville, San Francisco and Tacoma. Then run competitor discovery for the “durability” and “trail running shoes” groups, to discover competitors like RunningShoeGurus.com, SeattleTrailRunnersClub and BestTrailShoes.com. And finally, view top performing keywords by each combination of “durability” group, “trail running shoes” group, and location. By the end, you’ll have a clear view of the top-performing competitors, websites and keywords competing with you over that feature, in each market.

Thanks for joining us on this exploration of how you can beat your local competitors using GinzaMetrics. If you have any questions – or if you’re ready to start your own GinzaMetrics journey – we’re here to help!

You can also check out the original presentation Erin Robbins, GinzaMetrics’ President & COO, used at State of Search below:

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