Competitive research can be a tricky thing for organic search marketers, and paid search is no different. It's important to know what your competitors are doing, especially if what they're doing...well...sucks.
The bounty of information you can access to uncover paid keyword strategies is massive with tools like Raven or SEMrush. These tools are a keyword wonderland to a nerd like me, but that also means there's far more than I need, which can become overwhelming if the data isn't managed carefully. Not to mention that there are bunches of ways to analyze that data for competitive insights.
Let's focus, then. First we'll talk about the most common way I see people do it, and then one way you can take an existing but little-known Google AdWords report to pry deeper into the competition. I'll explain how then to use the tools to stay on target.