What is an Example of Competition Analysis for Digital Comic Book Marketing?

gamalhennessy Community • Jul 15, 2020

Last week, we began an exercise designed to explain the four parts of developing a digital marketing plan. I offered a fictional vampire crime graphic novel called Blood Bond to use as an example. (See What is an example of a digital marketing story synopsis and What is an example of an ideal reader profile?) Today, I’m going to walk through how you can analyze a competing comic that appeals to your ideal reader.

If competition is the effort of two or more parties acting independently to secure the business of a third party (See What is the Competition for Your Comic?) then the competition for Blood Bond is any comic that appeals to the reader who likes supernatural criminal horror.

To find the competitors for Blood Bond, you can look through various websites and online stores that contain an internal search engine, including Amazon, Comixology, Google, and The Grand Comics Database. All you’d have to do is type in variations of the phrase “vampire crime”, see what comes up and determine whether or not the books you found were competitors.

The combination of vampires and crime isn’t unusual in comics. You’ll probably find dozens of titles from American Vampire to Bite Club to Crimes of Vampires. Once you found your competition, the next step is to compare Blood Bond to each competitor in two ways:

An ideal reader comparison looks at the demographic, psychographic, genre, and generational aspects of each competitor in relation to your story. This shows you how your story measures up relative to the competition and can give you hints on how you can offer things your competitors don’t.

SWOT is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. It is a framework for evaluating the competitive position of a comic outside of the actual story.

Let’s compare Blood Bond to one of the major competitors in the vampire crime niche: Vampire the Masquerade from Vault Comics.

1. Potential Competitor 1

a. Title: Vampire the Masquerade

b. Ideal Reader Comparison
i. Demographic: The demo of the two books is almost identical. Both stories are set in urban environments, both have conflicts rooted in current events, and both paint religious history and Western society painted in an unflattering light.

ii. Psychographic: The frame of mind of the two books is slightly different. The protagonist of Blood Bond is trying to maintain her moral compass in a complex dark world while the characters of Masquerade have given in to their dark natures centuries ago. That courageous self-determination might be a point of difference that attracts a more distinctive reader.

iii. Genre: Both stories are firmly within the conventions of vampire crime and Blood Bond doesn’t do enough in one graphic novel to set itself apart.

iv. Generation: Both stories are written for adult audiences because of the inclusion of violence and gore in the narrative.

v. Distribution Channel: Vault comics releases their titles in all major distribution channels, so competition between the title can’t be avoided in print or online.

c. SWOT Analysis
i. Strength: Because Blood Bond is a self-contained story, it doesn’t require knowledge of the complex Masquerade universe that has been growing since 1991.

ii. Weakness: Masquerade has an established fanbase in role-playing games, novels, and television shows. In addition, the comic is set to coincide with the release of a new triple A video game. Therefore, it has a substantial head start in terms of capturing market share.

iii. Opportunity: Blood Bond could be more appealing to readers who just want a satisfying story without a lot of lore homework.

iv. Threat: All this transmedia activity has the potential to drown out other competitors in the space.

Keep in mind, this analysis needs to be done for every competitor in your market, so you might have to do this several times depending on the nature of your book.

Also, nothing in the competition analysis should discourage you from making the comic you want to make. You just need to be aware of who you’re up against and the ways you can compete.

In the next post, we’ll look at how you can use the information you found to build your digital marketing plans.

Have fun with your comic.

wgosline 6 months ago

Very helpful! Thanks


gamalhennessy admin 5 months ago

Thank you!