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7 Free Ways to Research Your Competitors on Social Media

Competitor research is an important part of marketing and social media planning.

Why Do You Need Competitor Research?

You can endlessly try different strategies, search for new ideas to bring your social media into life or rely on your experience and intuition, but you can also increase your chances by analyzing your competitors’ work. You will get a full picture of what is worth trying and what’s not. It’s always best to learn from others’ experience. So, you need social analysis for the following reasons:

  • Understand which brands in your industry are powerful competitors
  • Compare social media strategies and tune yours
  • See what is viral in your industry and what topics create the most buzz
  • Come up with new ideas for your posts
  • Define real influencers who are collaborating with your competitors
  • Learn from others’ mistakes and avoid making them yourself

Find Out Who They Are

All the data you can collect on competitors is worthless if you don’t know what to do with it. Nevertheless, to analyze this data, you need to find out who your competitors are.

Ask Social Networks to Show Them


Ask Facebook to show your competitors’ pages. Search for the keywords consumers would use to find your business. For example, if your company sold stationery, write “stationery”, “notebooks” and others in a search bar.

Facebook competitor research img

Facebook Insights

Go to Overview to see what competitors Facebook picked up for you. You can see their weekly activity according to the number of posts and engagement they reached.

Facebook competitor research example

With Posts Overview you can see what exact posts were successful. Analyze them and implement these effective posts into your content plan. Here it is – you have one target audience, so it’s clear that this content will perform well on your page as well.

Facebook competitor engagement research img

Target Their Followers

Now when you understand what content your common target audience likes, you can “borrow” their followers and show them your promoted posts. When managing detailed targeting in Facebook Ads, choose your competitors’ followers.

Facebook ads example


Twitter lets you use the advanced search to find your competitors: from keywords to their location.



Use Instagram hashtags to find your competitors accounts, their top posts, hashtags that they use and places they tag.

nstagram hashtag research example

Places hint: It’s not necessary to tag your real physical address for your photos. When you understand who is your audience and what their interests are, you know what places they visit most. If you are a clothes brand, tag shopping malls and other famous trade spots.

Free Tools to Analyze Your Social Media Competitors

Fanpage Karma

This free comparative analytics tool covers engagement, growth, most-used content sources and keywords, top posts, frequency, engagement by day and time, post type and supporters, among other metrics.

Before you start, let the tool know which competitors you want to monitor. You can add as many as you need.

Fanpage Karma img

Then you can choose a page and see data you are interested in: content, times & types, influencers, fan posts, ad value, history, and videos.

Top and Weakest Posts

Here you can see the best and weakest posts. Analyze posts of your competitors by different indicators like likes, shares, comments, and reactions. See what posts were successful, when, and why.

top and weakest posts img

Key Words and Hashtags

See what topics and phrases appear most often and what hashtags and how many they use.

Most frequently used words example

When and How Often They Post

With this option, you can see the distribution of posts per weekday in the selected period.

detailed analytics img

Engaging Types of Posts

If you haven’t decided yet what exact types of post your followers engage with most, see how it’s going on your competitor’s page.

times and types img


With its free plan, you can work with Influencers and Monitors.

Find Out Who Promotes Them

You can select the industry that you need and see who promotes your competitors. Once you know that these influencers do this sort of marketing and their followers are interested in similar goods and services, you can contact them and ask for collaboration. Learn more about Influencer marketing in this tutorial.

Klear img

Compare Competitors

This tool allows you to compare two brands. You can compare as many as you wish.

klear img

Social Website Traffic

You want to drive traffic from social, so you need to know the exact network that will give you the best result. See what works for your competitors and test on new channels.

Klear fanbase img


Come Up with Topics

If you have a hard time with new ideas for your blog topics, see what your competitors write about and what exactly gets more engagement. You can also come up with viral topics.

BuzzSumo example

When you know what content is successful, you begin to understand what days and times work best, you need a tool to organize your social media work.

Attract More Clients from Social Media

With PromoRepublic you attract more clients from social media. Choose your industry or type in a keyword to see all the post ideas so you can create a diversified content plan with ready-to-go engaging, promotional, and curated posts.

PromoRepublic image

Competitor research is important, but it doesn’t need to be difficult.

  • Dan K

    Thank you Alla. This is one of your best posts so far! So many tips and resources.

    • Alla Bogdan

      Thank you, Dan!