Competitors Customers Targeting: Competitive advertising strategies Through Google Search Ads

There are a lot of different ways to you can target your competitors on different platforms such as Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc. But one of the most popular ways and one of the oldest ways to target competitors is through the Google search ads.

Competitors Customers Targeting through Google Search Ads

There are two types of targeting that you can do through Google search ads.

  • competitors brand targeting and,
  • competitor’s product or services targeting

Though they look similar that’s the trickier part. Not both of them can be used for the same purposes. There are basically two purposes that we could the competitors targeting for:

  • Brand awareness and,
  • driving conversions

Well, branding is the part that most digital marketers use competitors targeting for. However, you can also use the competitor’s product or service targeting to drive conversions.

Competitors Targeting through Google Search Ads For Branding

Let us say that you have an awesome product and you want to sell. Even, you are selling that awesome & better product at a cheaper price. On the other hand, people are still buying similar products from another website or better say that from your competitors’ website. Now, replace the single product with the products and services.

Competitor targeting

You cannot advertise all the products and services at the same time online. That will burn a hole in your packet. So, the best way to find the audience which is similar to the audience lower in the conversion funnel is the organic audience to the competitor’s website. Just target the competitors’ websites and you start getting the traffic.

But that’s not the all that I want to say. Here is something that I would like to recommend. Try the competitor’s targeting for brand awareness only when-

  • You both sell similar products or services
  • Your brand is relatively new and growing

But there is more to it. Here is –

Google Search Ads Competitors Targeting For Conversions

This is what I wanted to focus on. Besides branding, you can actually try competitors targeting for conversions and get benefitted out of it. But here are some checkpoints –

  • Try with first a few products categories or services
  • Make sure people have started to recognize you as a brand

Marketing Strategies to Attract Competitors customers

Decide product categories & find out competitors

  • Decide the product categories that you want to target. Let us say that you are an e-commerce website. In that case, you would want to pick out the top product categories that really drive your sales or you believe should perform. Let’s say you picked up furniture, outdoors, and mattress
  • Do some keyword research for these products and see what competitors are using these keywords. You can also use tools such as Spyfu or Semrush to get the data.
  • Make a list of the competitors. Here is the list of competitors that I figured out in Canada those are advertising online as of today
    • Sleep country
    • Loom and leaf
    • Saatva mattress
    • Leesa
    • Haven mattress
    • Silk and snow
    • Matty sleeps
    • douglas bed

Modify the keywords

  • Just suffix mattress to these brand names. So it now becomes:
    • +Sleepcountry +mattress
    • +Loomandleaf +mattress
    • +Saatva +mattress
    • +Leesa +mattress
    • +Haven +mattress
    • +Silkandsnow +mattress
    • +Mattysleeps +mattress
    • +douglasbed +mattress
  • The keyword match type, I will leave up to you but I like to make them as the broad modifier. This keyword structure makes sure that I only get intended traffic to my website which is interested only in the competitors’ mattress. But that is not the end of story.

Exclude the brand terms as negative keywords

  • You also need to add the brand name exact match in the negative keywords. This will ensure that you are not receiving the entire brand traffic from the competitors but only the interested traffic in a particular product.

Competitive advertising examples

Before we go any further into this, have a look at the image below:

Booking hotel competitiors targeting

So I searched for the keyword booking hotel after the website and I also saw cheap hotels appearing just below Let us have a look at their headlines: | Hotels and, 

Hotel Booking –

Look how smartly has tried to use brand name in the headline itself. Let us have a look at their ads description. | Hotels’s official website! Over 1,093,000 hotels
online. We speak your language. Best Price Guarantee.
Read real guest reviews. 24/7 customer service. Secure
booking. Get instant confirmation

Hotel Booking –
Compare Rates Low Price Guaranteed Save 25-70% Off
Hotels! 24 Hr Customer Care. Search Hotels. Book Online.
Highlights: Low Price, Provides 24 Hour Customer Care.

Now if you look closely, has tried to leverage all the weakness of It has advertised the following attributes which might pull a customer to try CheapHotels:

  • compare rates
  • low price (highlighted twice)
  • save 25-70% off
  • 24 hours customer care (again highlighted twice)

CheapHotels is trying to explain here that why are they better to

Make the landing page more appealing

What we saw until now was a wholesome effort to get a customer diverted to your website who is loyal to your competitors by clicking your ad. But that’s not the end. That’s just the beginning. Now that you have promised a lot in your ad copies, the prospect would like to see the same on your landing page. And there have to be factors that promote the customer something extra. So, I searched for a savings account in Vancouver and here is what I got.

savings bank keyword ads

I clicked the top two paid results. Just for your information Tangerine is a bigger and famous bank compared to Manulife bank here in Vancouver. Let us have a look at their landing pages.

Tangerine bank landing page

You can see that Tangerine bank talks about the regular stuff such that cash bonus, interest rates etc. Now, let us see what the other bank has to say on its landing page. This is a part of landing page optimization based on the ad copies.

Manulife bank landing page

Look at the bold heading and texts on the header image. Looks like this bank has a lot to say and offer to you. Maybe you would refer this bank to your friend next time if he/ she wants to open a bank account but their own risk.

The overall advantage that you get out of the competitor’s brand name product category targeting is that it is still now heavily bidded. On top of that, avg. CPC will be too low.

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