Tips & Guides — 29 Jul 2022
10 Ways to Build Brand Awareness
The importance of building your brand awareness and extending your reach can’t be overstated. The benefits include increased sales, higher profits, and influence, since well-known brands have the ability to create strategic partnerships and attract the best employees.
Brand awareness concerns the levels of familiarity consumers have around your brand. It means more than consciousness of just your products or services, it’s about recognizing your logo, name, and values. Brand awareness is stronger with some companies than others – think McDonald’s golden arches, for example, or Apple’s bitten apple logo. In fact, you’d probably be able to identify most of the brands in 2020’s brand power rankings.
While these big brands can afford to buy expensive ads at Super Bowl games to increase brand awareness, you don’t always need to spend millions of dollars to build your brand’s value in the eyes of your target audience. Some brand-building strategies are surprisingly inexpensive.
Awareness is achieved when your customers and prospects can make instant associations with your brand. This brand awareness will hopefully be a precursor to other concepts, brand value being the most important. As customers get more familiar with your brand, they’re likely to trust you and believe you’ll offer them a high-quality customer experience. Once you’ve achieved this, customers are likely to boost your economics.
In days gone by, simply having a presence online was considered sufficient to building a satisfactory ecommerce customer experience and brand presence. If you had the requisite website and social media profiles set up people would just somehow absorb your brand message.
Nowadays of course things have changed. Competition is fiercer so brands have to work harder to build awareness and trust online, with well-planned out digital marketing strategies. By making online the focus of your marketing efforts prospective customers will become more familiar with your products and services, whether you sell templates for forecasting using Excel or sports equipment, making the choice to buy them easier for them. This will make them less likely to churn – or ditch your brand – over the long run.
Using social media, for example, to promote your brand costs next to nothing. Even sponsored ads are relatively inexpensive and offer a high degree of flexibility. Offline methods of building brand awareness and to be more costly and tend to statistically have lower ROIs compared to a media like social media. For this reason, social networks have to become a key part of your brand awareness strategy.
If you sometimes run out of ideas for your content you’re not alone. Here again, social media can come to the rescue. Social platforms are great places to check out new ideas and identify key trends that your target audience is interested in. If you sell, for example, IP phone systems you might find that your audience is interested in knowing how VoIP works.
Armed with some fresh ideas you can kickstart your content strategy and create marketing material that’s relevant to your audience.
Social media is once again a cost-effective way to grow your leads. With 4.48 billion people (almost 57% of the total population on Earth) using social channels around the world, there’s plenty of consumers to aim for. It’s a case of using the right strategies at the right time to build your brand awareness.
Now that we’ve covered the “why’s” of brand awareness let’s take a look at the “hows”. Here are ten practical ways to help you get started.
Targeting your potential customers is critical to your success with brand awareness marketing strategies. Start by defining who your ideal target audience is. They will be the people that have a need for your products or services. Finding out who they are will make it easier for you to connect with them, for example on social media, so you can communicate with them effectively.
Content is a great way to raise awareness of your brand and develop your brand voice. It’s a way to showcase your brand personality, share opinions and position yourself on issues. Content helps to humanize your brand. But it has to be engaging. If your content is not engaging your target audience they will click or scroll away.
When you’re planning your content marketing don’t just stick to written content. Create videos, podcasts, and infographics. While blogs and downloadable guides are relatively easy to do they’re not the only option.
Podcasts, for example, can do wonders for your brand awareness, for example, and provide you with a way to connect audibly with your audience in an intimate setting. Rather than giving people the hard sell, podcasts can help make your brand memorable by educating, entertaining, or informing them.
Consumers are often swayed by influencers when they’re making decisions about products and services. Influencers often have large followings on social media networks so it makes good sense to make use of these services in order to boost brand awareness. Partner with influencers relevant to your industry or target audience for exposure.
From traditional posts to Instagram stories, there are multiple ways influencers can show off your goods and services in their best light. Hellmann’s Island crossing made use of actor Stephen Fry to promote their Christmas Food Waste campaign.
When you’re engaging in influencer marketing make sure it’s authentic and created in line with the influencer’s tone and style. Product recommendations or endorsements that come from someone your audience trusts can work well so make sure the influencer is relevant. Don’t simply focus on finding an influencer with a large following, look for one with an engaged following where their audience comments, likes, and interacts.
Provide your influencer with a discount code or link to your product and encourage them to take pictures of them using your products to boost conversions to your brand.
Guest blogging or guest posting is the act of writing content for someone else’s website. It enables you to boost your online presence and brand credibility as well as build relationships with companies in your industry.
Use a platform like Buffer to present your blog posts or find a website in your niche and ask if you can guest post for them.
The key is naturally to create high-quality content so that you leave a positive brand impression on readers. Be authentic and share case studies and tactics that have worked for your brand. Don’t outsource your content creation to cheap writers and don’t overstuff pieces with backlinks.
If you’re just getting started, aim for smaller publishers. Later when you’ve built up awareness you can target larger players in your industry. By getting exposure to new audiences you’ll be able to build up trust and grow your following.
Influencers can win you lots of fresh brand awareness and new customers. But partnership marketing is another way to successfully promote your brand, and it’s one that both B2B and B2C companies are waking up to.
When partnering with a brand:
Referral marketing, or word of mouth marketing, can be a highly effective way of extending your reach using individuals who already love your brand. The majority of consumers take the opinions of their friends, family, and peers into consideration before making a purchase.
Some ways to get your referral program off the ground include:
If you’re just starting out with referral marketing there are numerous types of referral program software available to make expanding your partnerships easier.
People love giveaways so take advantage of this fact and you should reap the benefits brand awareness-wise. Be strategic because there’s no point in giving away stuff free of charge if you don’t have a plan to generate awareness.
Contests with prizes to win can help you attract followers on social media. Always remember to make sure your giveaways or prizes align with your brand identity.
To run a successful contest make sure people know all the requirements to enter or any specific rules including deadlines and when winners will be announced. Make your contests shareable by including a clear CTA for people to share, comment, or like.
If you’ve created a social media account on each of the platforms your audience use you should be congratulated. But when it comes to social media management, there’s more work to be done. You need your audience to recognize your brand the minute they land on your profile pages. A great brand image can help to personalize your brand on social media.
When you’re creating your social media profiles, focus on using engaging images. It’s essential to build your brand visually so these images will play a big part in whether your audience will remember you. Incorporate your logo and when you’re writing content break it up with images.
Use a different social media marketing strategy for each platform you’re on. Don’t simply share the same posts across all of your social media networks. Users behave in unique ways informed by the social media platforms they’re on, and the structure of each social network varies dramatically. Instagram, for example, features visually-focused posts with short captions. LinkedIn favors longer posts with minimal visuals.
Use hashtags in your social media posts to boost your brand’s social media reach and engagement. Including hashtags means you’re taking part in a conversation that’s happening right now on social media and it makes your posts more visible. This can lead to you getting more likes, shares, and comments as well as win you new followers. Using a hashtag that’s connected to an issue outside your brand can illustrate your commitment to a cause or charity.
Generate leads by promoting your social media channels everywhere you can. Insert links to your social accounts in your marketing emails, at the end of blog posts, and naturally on your website.
Social media ads can be a great addition to your overall social and brand marketing strategy. Sponsored ads can help you reach your target audience quickly and gain brand recognition – in many cases more quickly than via an organic social media strategy. While this form of advertising will involve some financial outlay, if you’re careful you can match your advertising costs to your ad budget and achieve impressive returns on investment.
Decide which channels are best for your business. Linkedin, for example, provides a great way for B2B companies to get their messages across (although this platform can be one of the costliest).
On Facebook and Instagram, the best way to build brand awareness is to create lookalike audiences. These can be tailored to look like your current Facebook followers. If you have a Pixel – a tool that tracks and retargets users – you can use this to create audiences similar to your own.
There are plenty of ad options on YouTube but for brand awareness, bumper ads are the wisest choice. Bumper ads are six seconds long and they show before or during a video. These ads can help offer a glimpse of your brand, plus users can’t skip them. You can segment your ad by demographics as well as by video topic, categories, and keywords.
Paid for brand awareness campaigns on Twitter can get you more viewers of your Tweets. If your social media following is limited this could be a great way to get discovered. Paid for tweets can be served in users’ timelines, and in search results.
All the clicks, scrolls, PPCs, and other actions your visitors take reveal their behaviors as they’re interacting with your brand. You need to capitalize on this data and transfer this intelligence into ways to improve your performance online and better support your brand-building activities.
Metrics to track to measure brand awareness include:
Implement A/B testing to see which strategies are working best for you. For example, you can identify which email headlines are performing successfully in terms of achieving the highest click-through rates, or which types of social media content are getting you positive results so you can supply more of that type of content in the future.
Every social platform has its own native analytics and this can be a good place to start if you’re on a limited budget. If you want a more in-depth look at your metrics you can use a social media analytics tool like Hootsuite to access customized graphs and comparisons to previous date ranges.
To get a unified picture of all your marketing campaigns’ performance software like Appsflyer can be invaluable and convenient since it integrates with a wide number of platforms you may already be using, including your existing referral program software.
When it comes to building awareness for your brand there’s no one, tried and tested formula. Luckily though you don’t have to pour all your valuable resources into high-cost advertising to generate awareness for your brand.
The best way to create strong brand awareness is to combine a number of online strategies from social media and brand partnerships to influencer marketing. Using multiple content approaches including visual content and optimizing your advertising campaigns using remarketing can all play an influential part in ensuring your brand gets noticed.
When it comes to running a successful brand awareness campaign make sure you make use of all the relevant technologies at your disposal. Check out the top cloud providers Gartner to identify the best ones for your brand.
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