Let’s start with a Brand Awareness Test. Take a few moments review the graphic below.
- How long did it take you to recognize these logos?
- What makes it easy to recognize brands?
- Is the color or style of the logo recognizable enough you don’t even need additional text or the business name to accompany it?
Every single one of these big brands have spent ALOT of time and money insuring their brand is recognized quickly and the consumer knows their product by heart. The main goal of every business, large or small, is to get on top of the competition and stay there. This takes good brand awareness. But what exactly is brand awareness?
noun: brand awareness
the extent to which consumers are familiar with the distinctive qualities or image of a particular brand of goods or services. “a campaign to increase brand awareness”
Brand awareness happens when someone remembers your brand from previously seeing something like your logo, slogan or company name. When talking brand awareness you must also consider brand recognition.
Customers recognize your business in three steps: 1) your logo/business name, 2) knowledge of your products/services and 3) overall feeling of your business. For example there’s no doubt you would recognize the Starbucks logo from a mile away or the McDonald’s famous arches. This brand recognition didn’t happen overnight.
Consider this: If people don’t know who you are, they can’t purchase your product or service when they need it. Building brand awareness builds your reputation and drives customers to your business to purchase. It’s a very important when marketing new customers, retaining old customers and standing out in the crowd.
How can you build this same brand awareness for your small business?
Brand awareness is all about baby steps and patience. You have to understand people aren’t going to remember you after seeing your logo once or twice. It’s your overall marketing presence and consistency on multiple channels that eventually earns customers’ trust. Build a marketing strategy that is unique and creative to beat out your competitors.
Define your audience
Defining your specific target audience and developing buyer trends is super important because you can’t afford to target everyone. The more focused your audience is, the better they will engage with your brand. Simply put, your target audience is the group of people you’re making your products and services for. It’s the foundation for your brand awareness so by concentrating on your target audience you’re able to see a much better return on your investment.
Consistency Is Key
It’s important to stay consistent on all platforms – from print advertising, social media, your website and blogging. We’re sure you already know the importance of consistency, but it’s always good to get a reminder.
If you as a brand are consistent in everything you do you will become a trusted and reliable source for customers to return to again and again. And you will have a higher chance of ranking in search.
Invest in Social Media
Staying current on your social media outlets is a must these days. Scrolling through any social media platform you’re sure to come across a sponsored ad (or two or twenty) with a catchy photo accompanied by some text. When setting up your ads, choose a photo that resonates with your audience with a minimal amount of text within the image or no text at all.
Adding your logo subtly in the bottom corner can also help you build brand awareness. Make sure you are using your brand’s target keywords with any text description of your ad that way if someone is searching for “trade show displays” on Facebook, the likelihood of your post showing up is greater.
But don’t just run ads on social media – you should also be posting regularly too. And you should also be replying to comments and messages. This gives an instant sense of trust when you provide a solution to their problem quickly. Make a conscious effort to interact with your customers.
Consider this: All ads, whether print or social media, should be cohesive with each other across all platforms. You don’t want the consumer to get confused by your branding or see a lapse in branding. Using the same types of imagery, fonts, colors and logos has been proven to significantly increase brand awareness over time.
Partner With Other (Bigger) Brands
If you are a smaller brand looking to build brand awareness, partner with established brands to have giveaways or even collaborate on a product.
If you are a smaller brand just starting out ready to build brand awareness, it’s time to turn to Instagram and find brands that you would like to work with. Engage with them on social media and once you have built a relationship you can ask them to collaborate. Instagram giveaways are perfect for building brand awareness. It’s a simple way to get your name out there and to meet other brands and influencers in your market.
Provide Value by Blogging
Another great way to build brand awareness is to provide value to your customers by writing a blog! Blogging weekly is a great way to keep your audience engaged. If it’s impossible for you or someone in your company to update the blog weekly or bi-weekly, consider hiring a blog writing service. Also, make sure you’re providing interesting and relevant topics for your readers to keep them engaged. An easy way to come up with blog topics is to listen to your clients problems and provide a solution.
Consider this: Search engines are looking for your blog posts, so be sure to plug in some top ranking keywords within your text. Writing blogs for SEO (search engine optimization) can be challenging at first but with the right keyword, this just may be how potential customers find you.
Did you know it’s rare for a visitor to convert to a buyer the first time they interact with your brand. Building relationships with your customers will allow them to feel more confident ordering from you or using your services. And brand awareness is just another opportunity to build a lasting relationship with customers.
But don’t think that once you have the following of a loyal customer that’s it, you’re done advertising and never have to worry about brand awareness ever again! Nope, not even close. Even big companies like Amazon and Google continue to research and build their brand awareness to remain current with their target audience.
Bottom line, all aspects of marketing need attention on a regular basis for you to reap the benefits. You wouldn’t plant beautiful flowers and expect for them to grow without water, would you?
“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.” –Niklas Goeke