How To Build Brand Awareness For Your Business

November 18, 2020

Brand awareness can make or break a business, and it’s more important now than ever before. In today’s oversaturated market, consumers have countless options to choose from, and if your brand isn’t on their radar, you’ll get lost in the noise.

But what is brand awareness? It’s the extent to which consumers recognise and remember your brand. When people are familiar with your brand, they’re more likely to choose your products or services over those of your competitors.

Take Apple and Nike, for example. These brands have created a culture around their products that people are proud to be a part of. Consumers wear clothing with the logo on it, and they don’t hesitate to spend their money on the latest iPhone or Air Jordans.

In this guide, we’ll dive deep into how to build brand awareness for your business. So, let’s get started!

What Is Brand Awareness?

When it comes to promoting your business, brand awareness is key. It refers to the extent to which your target audience is familiar with your brand and how easily recognisable it is. Building a strong brand awareness is crucial, especially in the early stages of marketing and promoting your products and services.

For some marketers, brand awareness might seem like a vague concept that’s difficult to measure with hard stats and figures. But despite its intangibility, it remains an essential component of any successful marketing strategy.

Even if you’re someone who likes to track and measure everything, don’t let the difficulty of measuring brand awareness discourage you from building it up for your business.

What Are The 3 Types of Brand Awareness?

When it comes to building brand awareness, it’s important to understand that there are different types of awareness that you can aim for. By identifying these types and tailoring your strategies accordingly, you can increase your brand recognition and establish a strong presence in the market.

In general, there are three types of brand awareness that you should know about:

Brand Recognition

This refers to the consumer’s ability to recognize and recall a brand when presented with its name or logo. It is the most basic level of brand awareness, and it can be achieved through consistent branding and marketing efforts. Companies often use slogans or jingles to create brand recognition, making their brand more memorable and distinct.

Brand Recall

This refers to the consumer’s ability to remember a brand when prompted with a particular product or service category. For example, when thinking of soft drinks, consumers may recall brands such as Coca-Cola or Pepsi. Brand recall is often achieved through consistent branding, product placement, and advertising.

Top-of-Mind Awareness

This is the highest level of brand awareness and refers to the consumer’s ability to immediately recall a brand when thinking of a specific product or service category, without any prompting. It is the ultimate goal for most companies, as it ensures that their brand is the first one that comes to mind when consumers think of a particular product or service. Achieving top-of-mind awareness requires consistent and effective branding and advertising, as well as a strong reputation for quality and reliability.

Why Is Brand Awareness Important?

Brand awareness is crucial to any successful marketing strategy as it forms the foundation of lead generation. At its core, brand awareness is all about how recognisable your brand is and how much your target audience knows about it.

Brand awareness creates trust in your products and services

In today’s marketplace, customers have more options to choose from than ever before. As a result, they often spend time researching their options before making a purchase. This is where brand awareness plays a vital role. By creating a sense of trust in your products or services, customers are more likely to choose your brand over your competitors. This trust can be built through things like social proof, such as customer reviews.

When your brand has a strong sense of identity and personality, it becomes more than just a product or service — it becomes an emotional connection with your audience. By telling a story and creating a feeling around your brand, you can foster a stronger human/brand relationship and build lasting loyalty with your customers.

Brand awareness creates association with your products and services

Think of the way that people use “Google” as a verb, or how “Netflix and chill” has become a popular phrase. These brands have achieved such high levels of awareness that they have become synonymous with the products or services they provide. If you can achieve this level of association with your brand, you will have customers doing your marketing for you.

Through strategic marketing and advertising efforts, they have created a unique identity and personality that resonates with their target audience. As a result, when people think of search engines or streaming services, they immediately think of Google or Netflix.

This is the power of brand awareness. It creates a connection between a product or service and the brand name, leading people to use the brand name as a substitute for the actual definition. By achieving this level of brand recognition, your brand can benefit from free marketing as people talk about it and recommend it to others.

Brand awareness creates value for your company

When customers have positive experiences with your products or services, they are more likely to make repeat purchases and recommend your brand to others. Over time, this can help to increase the value of your brand and establish your products and services as the go-to choice in your niche.

It’s like a flywheel effect — a satisfied customer is more likely to make repeat purchases and share their experience with others, leading to more positive reviews and an increase in brand awareness.

This is the real strength of brand awareness. When you establish trust and loyalty with your customers, you create a valuable brand that people will flock to in your industry.

How to build brand awareness

What Causes A Lack of Brand Awareness?

It’s not uncommon for some companies to struggle with creating awareness for their brand. A lack of brand awareness can lead to low sales, reduced customer loyalty, and overall business growth.

But what causes this lack of awareness in the first place? In some cases, it can be attributed to a lack of marketing efforts or a failure to differentiate from competitors. Other factors like inconsistency in messaging, poor customer service, or a lack of engagement with target audiences can also contribute to a lack of brand awareness.

Inconsistent branding

If your brand’s messaging, colours, or logos are inconsistent across different platforms and marketing channels, it can confuse customers and make it difficult for them to remember your brand. This lack of consistency can also undermine your brand’s credibility, making it harder to establish trust with potential customers.

To build a strong and recognisable brand, it’s important to have a consistent brand identity that accurately reflects your values and mission. This includes ensuring that your branding is consistent across all touchpoints, including your website, social media, advertising campaigns, and physical stores (if applicable).

Poor online presence

If your website is outdated or not user-friendly, it can quickly turn off potential customers and hurt your chances of building brand recognition.

In addition, a lack of social media presence or infrequent posting can make it difficult for customers to find and engage with your brand online. This can lead to missed opportunities for brand exposure and ultimately impact your overall brand awareness.

Lack of advertising

Even the most established brands need to continue to promote themselves to stay relevant in the minds of their audience. Without advertising, your brand may be invisible to potential customers who could benefit from your products or services.

It is essential to reach your target audience with targeted advertising campaigns through various channels, including paid advertising on social media, email marketing, and other advertising methods. If you are not investing in advertising, you may be missing out on valuable opportunities to reach new customers and build brand awareness.

Negative word-of-mouth

It’s easier than ever for dissatisfied customers to share their negative experiences and reviews, which can quickly spread to a wider audience. This negative feedback can erode the trust and loyalty that a brand has worked hard to build, and can discourage potential customers from engaging with the brand.

Addressing negative feedback promptly and effectively is crucial to mitigating the damage and working to improve customer experiences, which can ultimately lead to improved brand awareness and reputation.

How To Build Brand Awareness on Social Media

Building brand awareness on social media is a process that takes time and requires more than just running advertising campaigns. While advertising your products and services can be helpful, it’s important to remember that building a strong brand on social media goes beyond that. Simply focusing on sales won’t create a lasting emotional connection with your audience.

If you want to establish a solid brand on social media, you need to focus on other factors as well. Here are some effective ways to create brand awareness and foster a deeper connection with your customers:

Act like a person, not a company

Building relationships with people is essential to creating a lasting connection, and the same applies to building brand awareness. It’s important to understand your audience’s interests, preferences, and values to develop a meaningful relationship with them. This can be achieved by taking the time to engage with your audience on social media, responding to their comments and messages, and showing genuine interest in their opinions.

Defining your brand identity is another crucial step in building brand awareness. Your brand should represent more than just the products or services you offer. It should embody your company’s values, beliefs, and personality. By communicating your brand’s identity effectively, you can connect with your audience on a deeper level, creating a loyal following.

One of the most effective ways to show your audience that you care is by providing value. Whether it’s through informative blog posts, entertaining social media content, or exceptional customer service, providing value to your audience will make them feel appreciated and valued. This can lead to increased brand awareness as satisfied customers are more likely to share their positive experiences with others.

Get social

Connecting with customers on social media is essential to building a successful brand. But, if you only interact with your customers when trying to sell your products or services, you will only be known for that — being just another company.

One of the best ways to increase brand awareness through social interaction is by upping your social media game. Engage with your target audience by sharing content that adds value beyond your products and services. Create interactive posts and resources, ask questions, and share interesting content on your timeline. You can even leverage user-generated content (UGC) by encouraging your audience to share unique content about your brand in exchange for a chance to win a prize or be featured on your page.

Think of your brand’s social media account as an opportunity to make new friends instead of just pushing sales. According to a global study conducted by Weber Shandwick and Forbes Insights, over 50% of brand reputation is a direct result of online sociability.

Don’t be afraid to tell your story

Crafting a compelling narrative around your brand can transform it from a mere business into something more meaningful for your consumers. By sharing your brand’s story, you create a personal connection with your audience, making them feel more invested in your brand.

What can you tell a story about? Anything! As long as it’s authentic and genuine. For example, Airbnb used storytelling to create a sense of community among its users. In a 2015 video, the company highlighted how its services have helped people form new friendships and connections all over the world.

People love hearing about others’ experiences, and sharing these stories can make them feel like they’re a part of something special. So, think about what unique stories your brand has to offer and share them with your audience. It can be as simple as sharing a behind-the-scenes look at your business or showcasing how your product or service has made a positive impact on someone’s life. Whatever it is, make sure it’s authentic and resonates with your target audience.

Create shareable content

To build brand awareness on social media, it’s crucial to create shareable content that resonates with your audience. Shareable content can take many forms, from blog posts and videos to user-generated content (UGC), and even memes. The key is to make it easy for people to share it with their friends and followers.

Word of mouth (WOM) is still one of the most effective marketing strategies, as people trust recommendations from their friends and family. When someone sees a product or service being used or recommended by someone they trust, they’re more likely to take notice.

It is important to remember that shareable content isn’t just about increasing sales. It’s also about building relationships with your audience. By creating content that sparks interaction and engagement, you’re fostering a sense of community and trust around your brand. So, don’t just focus on making sales all the time. Focus on creating valuable content that your audience will want to share with others.

How To Increase Brand Awareness For a Small Business

One of the biggest challenges for small businesses is getting your brand out there and building awareness among your target audience. Without a well-known brand, it can be difficult to attract new customers and grow your business.

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to increase your brand awareness, even as a small business with limited resources. Here are some effective strategies to help you boost your brand recognition and reach a wider audience.

Free versions, samples and trials

One powerful way to increase your brand awareness is by offering a free version of your service. This business model is known as a freemium model, and it lets customers sample your brand’s offerings before committing to a purchase.

It’s a tried-and-true marketing technique that’s been used for ages, from car dealerships offering test drives to food brands giving out free samples in supermarkets. Whether you’re in software, food, or any other industry, providing free versions, samples, or trials can be an effective way to get more eyes on your brand.

Create more shareable content

In the words of Bill Gates, “content is king,” and it couldn’t be more true. As a small business, content marketing can be a game changer in terms of increasing brand awareness. Not only is it an easy and cost-effective way to showcase your brand personality, but it also adds real value to your customers. Whether it’s blog posts, videos, social media posts or more, the possibilities are endless.

Creating shareable content for your website, such as blog posts, eBooks, and downloadable guides, is an easy way to get started. You can also collaborate with other brands in your niche by doing guest posting and cross-promotion on social media. If you’re not creating content, you’re missing out on massive opportunities and easy wins.

Become a sponsor

Many successful companies already do this. Whenever there are festivals, expo’s, concerts and other types of big events — they are usually sponsored by brands. It’s an easy way to get exposure from people who are likely to be your target audience.

Becoming a sponsor also allows you to align your company with events that match what you values of your brand. People who attend the events will notice your brand and begin to associate it with what the event means to them.

A good example of leveraging sponsorships is Red Bull. Keep in mind that Red Bull is just a simple energy drink, but they have managed to elevate their brand awareness to the point where it’s associated with adventure and daringness. How? They sponsor all of the major extreme sporting events like X Games, as well as individual athletes.

The “feeling” of drinking Red Bull has overtaken the product itself. 

Emphasize your brand personality

One of the rules for creating a distinctive brand personality is to treat your brand as a person. When you attach a personality to your products and services it can help to attract your desired target audience and increase brand awareness.

A great example of this is Nike. They mainly just sell shoes, but Nike has become so much more than that because they have successfully created a distinct brand personality. By partnering with some of the best athletes in the world they have been able to portray their brand personality as “cool” and trendy. Everybody likes a winner. Nike’s famous marketing slogan “Just Do It” resonates with people and gives them a certain sense of confidence.

You will notice that most of Nike’s marketing is about achieving greatness, rising to challenges and stepping up a level. That’s what people love about them and how they have achieved brand loyalty over their competitors continuing to drive sales.

Start a podcast

Podcasting has become the new major trend with millions of regular listeners every month. This has also provided new and exciting marketing opportunities, including a chance to increase your brand awareness.

It’s now easier than ever to create and share your own podcast with the world. Podcasting is an authentic way to connect with your target audience. You can engage with the listeners by entertaining, educating and informing them about all the things in your niche and build trust (putting a “face” to the brand) in the process.

If you’re not interested in starting your own podcast, you can always find existing ones in your niche and look to appear on them as a guest.

Another way to increase your brand awareness through podcasts is by sponsoring some. Just like events, podcasts also need sponsors and this can prove to be an amazing and cost-effective marketing solution for your brand.

How Do You Measure Brand Awareness?

If you don’t measure your results, how do you know your efforts are working?

It’s a bit more challenging to measure brand awareness compared to some of the other marketing metrics — but it doesn’t mean that it’s impossible. There is no single way to measure it directly. So, the best way to measure the effectiveness of your brand awareness campaigns is to look at metrics related to your engagement.

Here are some ways you can measure brand awareness:

1. Website traffic

This is an important metric as it allows you to directly measure how many people are coming to your website. You can look at it in 2 ways.

First is your direct traffic. So, how many people are coming to your site directly by entering the URL? If someone has typed in your exact URL it must mean they are aware of your brand.

Second is your overall website traffic. Looking at your site analytics like session time, pages per session and overall visitor number among other metrics can paint a picture for where/how people are finding you and interacting with your brand’s website.

2. Social media engagement

Much like your website analytics, your social media engagement can tell you a lot about how people are interacting with your brand. How many followers, like, shares and comments are you getting?

If the numbers are low, you should revise your social media and content strategy. Look at what your competitors are doing and where they are finding success as a starting point.

3. Google searches

Google processes over 40,000 search queries EVERY SECOND. Are people searching for your brand or brand terms? This is very important and largely comes down to search engine optimisation (SEO).

Need help with your SEO? We’re a specialist 5-star rated SEO agency here to help make your business more visible in search engines and outrank your competition.

4. Conduct a customer survey

By doing surveys you can get direct feedback from your existing customers and target audience. This can be an extremely useful method for understanding how people view your brand. You can use free tools to create surveys, like SurveyMonkey and share them on your social media/email newsletter.

You can use this data to help you measure brand awareness and to better understand how consumers view your brand. Using this method is technically free, so it can prove to be a very cost-effective way to improve your products and services or to tweak your brand personality.

In Conclusion

Building brand awareness is crucial for any small business looking to stand out in a crowded market. By implementing the strategies discussed in this article, such as creating shareable content, leveraging social media, attending events, and offering freemium versions of products or services, you can increase your brand recognition, credibility, and customer loyalty.

Remember, building a brand takes time, effort, and consistency. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different tactics and see what works best for your business.

And if you need help with your brand awareness, don’t hesitate to reach out. We are a 5-star rated digital marketing agency dedicated to providing top-notch solutions to help your business thrive. With our expertise and tailored approach, we can help you achieve your brand awareness goals and drive sustainable growth for your business.

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Gatis Viskers

I am the Founder & CEO of the award-winning digital marketing agency, Ambition Digital. With my holistic approach to digital marketing, which combines data-driven strategies, creativity, and cutting-edge technology, I am proud to have been recognised in numerous industry-leading publications.

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