“Steal” Our Competitor’s Working Strategy

You have probably read South Africa’s Marketing guide regarding stealing your competitor’s work, and ideas, or mentioning them in your advertising. However, was there anything mentioned about stealing your competitor’s working strategy? I mean we all go back to the drawing board to see what has worked and what has not worked, on that note we also look at what our competitors are doing at that moment and time.

When looking into what your competitor is doing or rather looking at their strategy your aim is to implement it better than they did so it works better for you. Well, let’s take a look at a different approach to this.

Taking into account that you already know your competitors and you keep track of their key metrics on your monthly report. Then you know which of your competitors is doing well and you have the top 2 highest competitors. However if not we recommend you start identifying your competitors and then make sure you keep track of what they are doing or the campaigns they are running.

You need to bare in mind that not all the strategies that are working for your competitors will work for you, that’s the most important aspect of the drawing board. Start by having a strategic analysis, know the big idea behind their strategy and how has it worked for them, and now knowing your audiences will their big idea work for your brand.

Let’s take a look at a practical example of one of our most famous brands stealing the other’s strategy. For the last few years, Nandos has been known for its hilarious advertising and social media presence that many other brands are envious of its marketing strategy. Through their tactical strategy, they have been able to grow their social media presence, stay relevant, be funny, be an advocate of South Africa’s social issues, and still be able to market their brand. That alone sets the standard very high for their competitors, especially reason being this has worked exceptionally well for the brand for more than 5 years now.

Now we see other brands starting to do the same but the one that stands out is McDonald’s doing the very same thing when launching their Valentine’s Day Campaign. Building up to the 14th of February they built up anticipation with their followers on Twitter by sharing content on relationships and had other brands including Nandos engaging with their tweets. Even after they launched their Valentine’s campaign they decided to continue with the same tone as this has been working out very well for them.

To conclude, in our example above with one brand “Stealing” a marketing strategy from the other, this brand was able to execute the strategy better than the first brand to a point that it had other brands who are not even competitors engaging with the post.


Ningi Sithole