Have you ever asked for Coca-Cola at a restaurant, only to be disappointed when they had Pepsi?
Have you seen a friendly debate over whether Ford or Chevy were the superior automobile? Were you shocked by the passion both parties brought to their side?
At face value, these disappointments and disagreements seem silly. Surely there isn’t much difference between Coke and Pepsi – both are cola with a similar look, feel and taste.
Furthermore, Ford and Chevy produce roughly the same type of automobiles with equal quality and pricing.
These ‘line-in-the-sand’ stances demonstrate the power of brand awareness, syncing a brand with a target audience’s way of life, spending patterns and preferences.
Brand awareness cements an idea of superiority into their minds, which lasts a lifetime.
In this article, I’ll make it easy for you to grasp all the basic concepts of brand awareness, then help you weave them into your campaigns.
Let’s make your next project stronger and substantially boost your brand.
What is brand awareness?
Brand awareness is how well consumers recognize traits of a particular brand, such as their unique qualities. Brand awareness extends further than simply recognizing a logo or jingle. The stronger the brand awareness, the likelier that a brand is popular.
Brand awareness is how customers react or feel when they see a specific brand element. Keep this in mind going forward, since it’s easy to mistake recognition with awareness.
What makes it so valuable?
Building brand awareness has a direct effect on brand equity. Brand equity is a measurable value that is created based on company reputation. When customers are aware of a specific brand’s quality, they choose their products over competitors.
Customer awareness increases brand equity because it allows companies to charge a premium for their products or services.
Similar to increasing equity, brand awareness also makes it easier to develop and release new products, ideas and services.
This is because the risk of failure is lower when customers trust your brand, are attached to it and are willing to buy your products based on brand loyalty.
As you can see, a little bit of awareness goes a long way. Let’s dive into some key tips.
Fundamental ways to bolster brand awareness
You need some basic requirements to be met in order to entice customers. Take a look at some of these important ways to improve.
Make your brand definable to customers
If your target market would struggle to define your brand, chances are they wouldn’t purchase a product or service from it either.
Think of your brand like a movie. In what ways would a film fanatic describe it to somebody else? Would they be able to give specific details that define the movie and make it unique? Would they be able to say more than “action film” or “comedy flick”?
Figure out which characteristics you want it to have and present to audiences. Just like a movie is more than just a ‘Thriller’, your brand is more than just a company that takes customer money. Make your brand definable as much as possible!
When it comes to engagement, think outside-the-box
Consider how your brand situates itself on different platforms. Is the content easily-accessible? Would it be considered share-friendly? Does it appear to have ulterior motives? Is it an altruistic brand trying to help its audience?
There are so many ways to reach audiences now that we might slip into a routine when delivering our content. Brand consistency and routine are one thing, but complacency is another.
In order to truly engage our target audience, some creative thinking is needed. Certainly, the quality of our content drives awareness. However, there’s much more we can do to reach customers.
Understanding the way your brand engages, through things like articles and social media posts, is the first step into building up a strong brand awareness.
Awareness requires (at least) an initial connection. Reach out and make it meaningful!
Imagine receiving a newsletter about a sale. Inside, it gives details such as the date, location and pricing.
You might be satisfied with this, since sales are a good thing. However, now consider that this newsletter comes ten times per month, with details about specials and sales.
Chances are, this wouldn’t make you feel too important. Now imagine a newsletter that gives updates about its company, how they’re responding to issues you’re dealing with and how they plan on going forward in the future.
This would be a more meaningful connection. Remember, there’s no substitute for sincerity!
Creative approaches to extend your brand awareness outreach
“To me, when you have unaided brand awareness above 30 percent, you have a mass market brand.” – Robert Pittman
Now that you’ve built a foundation and given customers a chance to favor your brand, it’s important to further its outreach. Here are some unique methods to help.
Change, improve or add to your brand persona
If you took a step back to evaluate your brand’s personality, how would you think about it? Would you feel like it was an extension of a person? Would this person have characteristics you value?
If it seems like your brand persona doesn’t answer these important values, consider ways to implement change. Look for places to alter the way future campaigns represent your brand on a personal level.
Furthermore, figure out unique ways to add to your personality. Tinker with different parts here and there but keep the main persona the same.
Consider reducing your content output to increase quality
“So in fact, narrowing down our choices means less overwhelm, and more creativity.” – Courtney Carver
There’s a thin line between putting out a lot of new content and spamming. To customers who get bombarded with different marketing campaigns, advertisements and clickbait every single day, your latest piece of content could be off-putting.
How do we avoid this? In what ways can we ensure our content is delivered to eager audiences who are happy to receive it?
One way is to reduce our overall output of content creation. If our target audience is getting three ‘Tweets’ per day notifying them of new articles and posts, they might just unfollow the brand.
Reducing how much content we’re creating makes for stronger pieces. We’re able to go more in-depth on topics, making articles credible and interesting.
Furthermore, this decision increases customer loyalty. When your audience feels they’re getting something of value rather than another unoriginal piece, they’ll feel more connected to your brand.
At the end of the day, empty mass advertising doesn’t drive brand awareness – it might do the opposite.
Show confidence in your service or product
Every business suggests, in one way or another, that their specific product or service is of high-quality. This is a standard position, and no one is swayed bye self-proclaimed greatness.
As such, it goes without saying that any praise you shower on your own products or services will fall on deaf ears.
Instead, show that you’re confident in your products. There are quite a few ways to do this. The first way is to give a free trial. This not only lets the customer try before they buy, but it shows you believe they’ll like it once they get to actually use it.
Another way, which won’t be a fit for everyone, is some sort of money-back guarantee. This is also entering ‘falling on deaf ears’ territory, but there are ways around that. You could try to improve on the offer by promising money-back with an extra bonus. A few companies have done this, giving unsatisfied customers their money back as well as something extra.
Whatever the method, make sure it stands out and represents a complete confidence in your services.
Create a YouTube channel and release scheduled content
“Humans are incredibly visual and powerful, moving images help us find meaning… [and] video helps capture and contextualize the world around us.” – Dan Patterson
YouTube is a low-cost platform to boost brand awareness and build a loyal customer base. Creating a branded channel connects you with users who are familiar with you, and also those who haven’t yet discovered the brand.
Making videos on YouTube is a straightforward process, requiring minimal technical know-how.
The great thing about releasing YouTube videos on a schedule (weekly, monthly, etc.) is it promotes your brand without advertising. It also builds credibility, giving you a powerful way to inform audiences about new happenings within your areas of expertise.
Some tips to help evaluate your brand awareness
Now that you have some exciting new ways to approach building brand awareness, it’s important to follow through with a periodic evaluation of your success.
It’s not always easy to evaluate how well your brand is holding up in the market, but there are some unique methods to give you a general idea.
When it comes to brand awareness, think big! You have a chance to build something special that could change major functions for the better.
Apply the unique approaches we discussed to gain important connections with your audience. These valuable relationships turn into customer loyalty over time.
Check out our complete branding guide to learn more.