Competitive Analysis Topic Template

This feature is only available for Social Listening customers.

New to Sprout Social? Learn more about how this topic template fits into our suite of competitive analysis tools here.

With Sprout’s Competitive Analysis Topic Template for Social Listening, you can easily define your individual competitors and create an optimized query for tracking their performance. This turns each competitor into its own data point, making it straightforward to compare metrics in trends to help influence your social strategy.

If you’re performing Brand Health Analysis as a part of your social strategy, add context to your data by benchmarking the success of your social strategy against your competitors. 

If you already have competitive analysis Topics you created without this template type, you can migrate to this template type for better Insights and analysis. 

Creating a Competitive Analysis Topic

You can create a Competitive Analysis Topic made up of Competitor Queries that contain keywords, hashtags, mentions and other information to listen to the conversations surrounding your competitors. These Competitor Queries then turn the resulting data into competitor-specific data in Insights. You can't include any more than 10 competitors in a query.

If you have more than 10 competitors you want to collect data for, you can break up these competitors into additional Topics by primary and secondary competitors.

To create a Competitive Analysis Topic:

  1. Click New Topic from the left-hand menu in Listening.
  2. Click Competitive Analysis for the Topic type.
  3. Enter the name of your first competitor in the Query Builder. Ensure to include your own brand within your Competitive Analysis Topic.
  4. Click Save.
  5. Add relevant phrases, keywords, hashtags or user mentions in the Competitor Query Card. Note that topics can only contain 2,048 characters.
  6. Preview the results in the Topic Preview area. Filter your results by competitor and then refine your Competitor Query to remove noise or unwanted messages.
  7. Click Add New Competitor. Repeat this process to add up to 10 competitors to your topic. Ensure one of the competitors is your own brand.


If you add a competitor to your topic after you’ve already created it, you won’t have access to any historical data. Instead, the updated topic will start collecting new data from the time it’s saved.

Viewing insights

After you build your Competitive Analysis Topic, you can view insights about how your competitors are performing and spot trends to improve your social strategy. Your Insights view is automatically segmented by competitors.  The visualization and segmentation within your Insights view makes it easy to compare competitor performance across every metric.


Performance Tab

The Performance Tab contains a competitor scorecard with selectable key metrics to give you quick context on how your competitors are ranked against each other. From this tab, you can quickly see the following information for your competitors for the date range you select:

  • Message Volume
  • Potential Impressions
  • Engagement
  • Sentiment Summary
  • Sentiment Trends

You can take a deep dive on a few select competitors or a single competitor by selecting the competitor from the right bar. 


Scorecard tab

The Scorecard tab provides you with an aggregate view of selectable metrics so you can quickly see how your competitors rank against each other. 


Export this view to a CSV to share with stakeholders and further tailor this tab by dragging and dropping the metrics you want to see and to remove additional metrics that don’t apply to your strategy. You can also narrow your scorecard by selecting just a few competitors.

Conversation tab

The Conversation tab provides you with a visual representation of the top keywords, hashtags, mentions and emojis for your competitors. As an added advantage, this word cloud is color-coded showing which terms are associated with each competitor.


You can also explore key metrics for specific keywords and hashtags with the Conversation Overview. This table provides volume, engagement, likes and impression breakdowns for each keyword or hashtag. 

Tailor this tab by selecting the word types you want to focus on and customize your Conversation Overview to organize the available metrics in a way that’s most meaningful to you.


Demographics tab

The Demographics tab provides you with charts for age and, profile overviews and location overviews. This way you can quickly see who is participating in conversations. View the device breakdown and a detailed location overview to see on which devices and where in the world conversations are occurring.

Messages tab

The Messages tab provides more details about the users posting messages that relate to your competitors. Each message is color-coded and includes a label that identifies which competitor the message is about. Quickly gauge the author’s followers and engagements, or further customize the messages to see the likes, comments and shares associated with it. 


Migrating your Topics

If you already created a Competitive Analysis Topic, you can easily migrate your current Topic to this format to access more detailed data, receive the new Insights view and compare up to 10 competitors in one topic.

If you have an existing topic with Themes built to perform competitive analysis, remove these themes as they won’t serve a purpose once you migrate your existing topics.

You can migrate your Topic to this updated format by editing your existing competitive analysis topic. When you go to edit the Topic, you see a popup message asking you to migrate your query into the Topic type.


There are two situations that can arise when you migrate your existing Topic depending on how you originally set up your queries. 

Original Query with Groups

If you originally set up your Competitive Analysis Topic query with multiple groups that contain keywords, hashtags and other information regarding your competitors, update the names for each group to the competitor you created the group for and save the topic. 

Original Query without Groups

If you originally set up your Competitive Analysis Topic query with all your competitive terms in a single group, migrating creates a single Competitor Query. In this circumstance, you need to create additional Competitor Query Cards and move the keywords, hashtags and other information into the proper Competitor Query Cards.

After you migrate to the new Topic type, any historical data from your original Competitive Analysis Topic is restored within 24 hours. Any new keywords you added to the topic will start collecting from that point forward.



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