Brand Awareness: What It Is and Why It Matters
Brand awareness. Every company does it to some degree, and some do it better than others. B2C brand awareness campaigns are memorable, quirky, repetitive and sometimes flat out weird. If you watch Daytime television, you should know the answer to the question… “Hurt in a car?” of course we’re going to call William Mattar. If I get in a car accident, that’s the first thing that’s going to come to mind. Buying men’s body wash? First thing that comes to mind for me, are the super odd and quirky Old Spice commercials. Does any of this really make sense? Nope. But you can’t stop watching the ad, from beginning all the way to its end. In a world of targeting users with short attention spans, this is always important. Be memorable.
“I’m a B2B marketer, not B2C, why should I use brand awareness?”
When it comes to B2B, we don’t always think of brand awareness when planning out a year of marketing, but it is just as important as it is in B2C marketing. Brand awareness is essential to every marketer’s strategy, no matter how big or small that company is. It provides new audiences an idea of what this company is capable of and why they should be working with them, and it provides existing clients a reminder of the benefits of using their services, and helps advocate a renewal or continued membership if needed. Many marketers believe brand awareness is a waste of time, or “everyone knows who they are,” which is fantastic news, but look at marketers like Geico, McDonalds, Coca-Cola, everyone knows these brands, but their advertising never lets off the gas, if anything they’ve continued to increase branding spends each year.
“How can I use brand awareness effectively in B2B marketing?”
The same concepts all transfer over to B2B marketing, if you have even one competitor in your market, you are trying to get an edge over them. B2B marketers need to start thinking more like B2C brands (see Giving B2B Buyers a B2C Customer Experience Can Make a Difference). Branding and maintaining a positive brand presence in the industry, will only help your other efforts like lead generation, or form based tracking, as you’re driving more and more traffic to the site to convert. Making sure your company is the first thing that comes to mind, when your audience is looking for a product, ensures you end up on top of competitors at the end of the day, and helps maintain good relationships with your existing clients. You can even strategize certain efforts to target existing users with ads or email blasts, to keep them engaged and reliant on your company’s services. Re-targeting existing user traffic, or sending out an e-mail blast with a customer satisfaction survey can offer more insights into how your services are being received, or even promoting new content on a weekly basis can both help them stay involved and aware of your brand – Marketing Tip: Adding an incentive for completing the form will often increase customer engagement. This will come in handy during renewal or continuation time, to ensure they are not bored or swayed by a competitor who is trying to tempt them to switch products or services. There are a lot of ways to use brand awareness effectively in your marketing efforts, to drive new users, and keep existing ones loyal to your brand!
“I use all of my marketing budget on PPC, I don’t want banner ads.”
The question for many companies when deciding where to plan marketing efforts, is if they want to even include brand awareness, or if their only goal is to drive form fills. Of course the answer is sales. We want trackable sales, and every campaign we run is lead generation. The reason brand awareness is so important in the funnel, is it increases your potential client’s awareness of your company, and why choosing you over a competitor is the right decision. If you’re not building the brand, or increasing trust, the user may be easily convinced to go with a different company. Branding provides lift to your site and other media outlets, which in-turn increases lower funnel, lead generation campaigns. Video and display advertising, is a great example of campaigns built for brand lift. Users online see ads all the time, maybe your ad sticks out to them, whether it’s a funny animation, or something memorable that differentiates you from competitors. They start researching the product a little more, look at reviews, testimonials, and price match other companies and assess which one would be the best fit. Video and display advertising provides the essential lift in traffic to help compliment PPC programs or SEM efforts that are also in your marketing strategy.
Build an experience your clients and future clients will remember!
Brand awareness has an essential part in every marketer’s annual advertising strategy, and provides necessary lift of complimentary advertising efforts, as well as increases brand trust and instills loyalty among existing customers. Being different, and memorable, in this stage is important, and keeping your message consistent will help develop this trust level, and over time bring more users over to the services you offer. Remember, keep it enticing and fresh! No company wants to be thought of as stagnant or non-innovative. It will also help the user consciously, or subconsciously, choose one vendor over another when making that final purchase or partnership. Why brand awareness? Pick a slogan… any slogan…
- Just do it.
- Because you’re worth it.
- I’m Lovin’ It.
Can you hear me now? Good.