How to measure brand awareness

One of my clients asked me a few days ago how they can measure their brand awareness ROI. It doesn’t matter if you’re a B2B brand, a healthcare manufacturer or a multinational brand, measuring your brand awareness is an issue. Marketers across all industries are trying to figure out how to measure brand awareness for their company, while simultaneously having to justify their budgets with ROI.

Many businesses measure the success of their marketing campaigns and other efforts by calculating ROI. Even though the impact of brand awareness can’t be directly measured, brand awareness does affect the success and the outcome of every marketing effort that has an impact on revenue.

How to measure brand awarenessImportance of brand awareness for businesses

No one will engage with a brand if they don’t know that it exists in the first place. In the modern digital world, it’s important to understand that online consumers want to know who they are dealing with before they decide to make a purchase. That’s why brand awareness plays a vital role in a brand’s marketing efforts.

Building a brand helps businesses stand out from the competition and establish more personal relationships with their target audience. The more your audience knows about your brand, products or services, the more willing they will be to embrace your marketing promotions, engage with your brand and make a purchase.

If your brand delivers on your customers’ needs and expectations, you ensure customer loyalty and retention which leads to a reduction in the cost of customer acquisition. Moreover, those loyal customers will often become brand ambassadors and further recommend your brand to their friends, family and other online consumers.

It’s really challenging to connect investment in brand awareness to business revenue. But by measuring brand awareness with the right metrics, you can prove the ROI of brand equity.

Brand awareness metrics and KPIs

Direct traffic

Direct traffic is a good metric to keep an eye on in order to measure the impact of the recall on your audience. Reviewing the growth over a specific time period gives you information on your brand awareness growth. The more people remember your brand, the more likely they would go directly to your site.

Search volume

If people are searching for your brand, specific products or services, that’s a good indicator of brand awareness. By monitoring search volumes on your branded terms and watching for fluctuations, you can see if your branding efforts are paying off.

Social engagement

Tracking your social media activities and engagement is one of the ways to measure your brand awareness. Keep a track on followers, shares, likes, comments, etc. Remember to regularly post useful content in order to increase your social media reach and increase engagement.

External Backlinks

When it comes to brand awareness, external links can improve your brand’s visibility and recognition of your website and offerings. To measure your brand’s external link performance, you should monitor the number and quality of external links to your site as well as referral traffic.

Social listening/brand monitoring

One of the most important elements of brand awareness is to track what your customers are saying about your brand. Tracking what’s being said about your brand, by who and in what tone (positive, neutral, negative) provides both qualitative and quantitative insights into the success of your marketing campaigns.

Competition

While monitoring your competitors might not be seen as a priority, it can be a useful tactic to better plan, budget and execute your marketing campaigns. That will help you understand key channels/platforms on which your competitors are active, as well as track advocates and influencers working with them. It might also help you understand their weak points as well as why customers might be choosing them over you.

Surveys

One way to measure your brand awareness is to survey and interview people. You can have short surveys on the website asking e.g. how visitors found you or if they had heard of you before. You can also ask your current customers when they became aware of your brand.

Conversions

Don’t forget to track and monitor conversions and engagement on your website, ideally with a CRM system. Measuring the impact of direct, referral or social media traffic on business outcomes will help you to prove the ROI of brand awareness. It’s one of the best ways to demonstrate the ROI of a marketing campaign by directly linking a campaign to opportunities and sales.

Measuring brand awareness is crucial to the success of your company growth. When reporting on any marketing campaign, remember that benchmarking is key. It’s important to monitor the kind of impact your campaign has. Having the right tools at your disposal to measure these metrics easily enables you to prove the effectiveness of your campaign and will help you budget for future campaigns.

Struggling with measuring the effectiveness of your brand awareness or marketing campaigns? Read our article on measuring the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns or get in touch!

How to measure brand awareness

What reputation is to a person is what brand is to a company. A company always does what’s best for its brand image and won’t put anything at stake. This is because a brand’s image is connected to the brand reputation, which would decide the audience reception.

The factors that decide customer engagement and positive brand awareness include customer loyalty, product or service quality, attention to detail, customer listening, social media monitoring, brand awareness measurement, and supporting actions.

So, how could a brand track its performance for improving its service? This is carried out by statistical analysis of the social media data and the overall brand reach obtained via content distribution channels and word of mouth marketing.

When someone hears about brand awareness, at first glance it may feel unnecessary or something that’s not providing any value. But you are missing out on the real opportunities and you may ask how?

Take, for example, we all know that Vivo sponsored the IPL tournament for this year. So whenever an IPL match viewer sees the game he/she will notice the brand name ‘Vivo’ and it gets stored in their subconscious mind. Then later when this same IPL fan goes in to buy a mobile phone the person will immediately recall the Vivo name — and this is known as brand recall.

Hence quicker someone recalls the brand the better the brand value. And more the brand value improves the chances of conversion from potential customers to buyers. So our focus here is to improve brand recognition with time and building brand value that offers long term benefits. How to go ahead with this?

The answer is measuring brand awareness. You may think you need a bigger budget for marketing and advertising to calculate this however you can do this by checking out some basic analytics and data.

If you are interested in social media data and audience targeting, then check out spreadd.io … Sign up today and explore our platform for free!

Let’s now find out the metrics which can be used for measuring and analysing brand recognition.

The incoming traffic on your website says a lot about brand awareness. If you have been investing in SEO marketing lately and social media marketing, check out the website analytics. You can look at Google analytics and find out people who came from direct search, organic search, or social channels. If the direct searches have increased lately, then your brand is known to more people now and customers are searching/interested to know about your venture.

Impressions tell the number of times the content was displayed on the feed, while the reach says the number of people who saw your content including the new visitors. For example, a post is shown to you 5 times on your feed, then the post gets 5 impressions. Hence, more impressions mean better content visibility, which increases the chances of the content reaching out to more audiences. This way if more people get to know your brand name, this automatically amplifies the brand awareness. If the impressions are low then it would be better to carry out content analysis and proper audience research for specific content targeting. You can find this utility on the Spreadd Adtech platform where we help content creators and brands to make content specifically relevant for their customers. Try out Spreadd!

Social media algorithms love engagements. This is why most of the influencers ask you to like, comment or share the content since this improves the brand/channel engagement score. The channel with good quality content and high engagement score will mostly get listed in the explore feed which attracts the viewers who are more likely to engage with the content, and this cycle goes on! As the brand engagements improve so does the brand awareness. More people would know about your brand and team just through increased engagement.

Are you able to find qualified leads through online marketing? If yes, then congratulations! If not, then maybe it’s time you give your marketing a thought. Leads are the people who have the potential of becoming your customer, and once you receive queries from qualified leads… you know that you did something well.

More the leads, better the brand awareness and you get known to a wider audience than before. For generating leads, carry out a monthly plan focusing on audience needs, understand their common pain points, work on a unique solution, and see how it goes.

Analytics on the rescue! The social media analytics include the channel growth, engagement score, comments, likes, unfollowing rate, incoming inquiries rate, conversion, social media listening and monitoring, audience demographics and more! What if I say that you can get all of them under one group? Yes, it’s on Spreadd and I strongly believe you will find the answer once you have signed up. So do check it out!!

The more you focus on the analytics, the better focused your content will be, making your followers engage and love your content.

In the end, you can also run a quick online survey or even get quick offline feedback from your customer on the things to be worked upon, online convenience, service quality and how likely are they going to recommend your brand.

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Two metrics to measure brand awareness and brand equity

How to measure brand awareness

Dec 17, 2020 · 3 min read

Brand measurement is a sore subject to me, and most brand marketers I think; because it’s nearly impossible to find a metric to the precision we want to measure it. Not being able to quantify can make it hard to prove the value of your work, especially to non-believers in the power of brand.

We usually resort to share of voice of PR, soc i al mentions, or even brand recall survey. But we all know the true measurement of a brand is reflected through customers’ actions, not eyeballs or words. The metrics we use to effectively measure brand, brand awareness and brand equity, should also reflect actions.

When people learn a new brand, through word-of-mouth or Instagram ads, they go search for it, and that is brand awareness. Organic search is a simple yet effective proxy of how many people recognize your brand. You should see it increase over time as your brand grow.

You can set up Google search console to see organic searches of your brand name over time. But a free tool anyone can use to measure search interest is Google search trend. The beauty of it is that it helps you scale interest from 0–100, meaning you can easily show anyone the impact of your campaigns on brand awareness over a selected period of time.

How to measure brand awareness

Brand equity is what makes a customer’s choice of your brand instinctive, a “no-brainer”, the decision is made outside the realm of conscious awareness. A good proxy of brand equity reflected in customer actions is the price elasticity of demand, measuring the sensitivity of demand to price.

A brand with positive brand equity has inelastic demand, a change in price will cause a smaller percentage change in demand, meaning customers are less likely to immediately switch to competitors when the price increase s compared to customers of a brand with worse brand equity.

Apple is a classic example of a brand with strong brand equity and inelastic demand to price. Even when Apple charges more and more for its products, customers are still unfazed.

How to measure brand awareness

How to measure brand awareness

Closely monitoring your sales and price not only helps you to predict the impact of price changes on sales but could also be an effective measurement of your brand equity.

This post is based on learnings from the CMO series of the Morning Brew with Joy Howard. I highly recommend you watch the series — so much good stuff.

Every company knows how their sales are going, and most marketers can tell you how their ad campaigns are performing, right down to the penny in cost-per-clicks (CPCs) and return on investment (ROI). But when it comes to specifics on brand awareness, the details often become blurry and the conversations start to become rather vague.

Because building brand awareness takes both time and money, you might think that this is something you could track and measure so you can gauge the costs and determine which strategies and tactics have been working best — and you would be right.

Brand awareness is something you can measure, and the tools you need are already in your digital toolbox.

What Is Brand Awareness?

Before you can measure something, you need to understand it. Brand awareness as a general concept is simply your target audience’s familiarity with your brand and their ability to recognize it. More specifically, it represents how aware people are of your brand name, the products you offer and what distinguishes your brand from the competition.

Just Knowing Your Name Isn’t Enough

Being aware of your name is a great start, but it’s hardly going to drive sales by itself. Back in 1996, Nissan ran a famous brand awareness campaign, featuring Ken and Barbie look-alike dolls and a toy car, complete with a Van Halen soundtrack, at a production cost of about $200 million. Everyone loved the ad and it even won some awards, but sales plummeted .

The problem? The toy car didn’t resemble anything Nissan had in its dealerships. The closest match to the toy had been discontinued. The company sold thousands of T-shirts and toys based on the ad, but car sales declined.

This is a painful reminder that brand awareness needs to include your products and what distinguishes you from your competition. And, just as importantly, awareness needs to come from your target audience. If your market is car-driving adults, being popular with children won’t do much for your sales.

How to Measure Brand Awareness

In the past, companies would measure brand awareness with direct surveys. You would hire a team of telemarketers, or send a team out onto the streets, to ask people which brands they recognized. That’s not really necessary today. Here are five ways you can easily measure brand awareness today:

Use Online Surveys

Online surveys, using services like SurveyMonkey or Typeform, are easy to set up and inexpensive to use. You can upload a survey to your website or integrate it into your emails with an email service provider. For best results, target warm leads, like current customers or newsletter subscribers.

Use short, multiple-choice questions, asking which brands they recognize in your market and which features they associate with your brand. Include a space for them to write down any thoughts they have to share. One of the benefits of these surveys is, of course, that they double as brand awareness campaigns.

Use Google Trends

If you’ve ever used Google Trends to explore niche markets, then you already know how powerful this free tool can be. Try entering your own brand in Google Trends to see the rate at which people have been looking for your company in the past month. If it’s been trending upward, that’s great. But even if you have a new company and it’s at a baseline of zero right now, don’t worry. Take a screenshot and then come back in six months.

You can also use Google Trends to compare how your brand is faring compared to a competitor. After entering your own brand, enter a competitor in the “Compare” field. If you’re planning on world domination, compare your brand to Nike or Coke, just for fun — and take another screenshot for posterity.

It is important to note that Google Trends won’t give you solid numbers on the number of people that searched your brand. We’d recommend supplementing trend data with impressions and keyword analytics pulled from Google Search Console and other SEO tools.

Track Social Media Engagement and Impressions

Facebook likes, Twitter followers and mentions can be powerful indicators of brand awareness. Only legitimate interactions count. If you bought social media followers, for example, or if you used any other tricks to artificially boost your numbers, these shouldn’t be included.

Organic interactions certainly count, as do interactions that came from brand awareness-focused ads or social media influencers. If a Facebook ad goes viral, resulting in thousands of shares and new page likes, or if your social media following grew by 500 percent after a partnership with a social media influencer, these are definitely great indicators of a booming brand awareness.

Keep track of when you share social media content and compare the results. You’re likely to get better traction — and greater brand awareness — from your target audience on specific days and times.

Use Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a powerhouse of invaluable data. Not only does it track page clicks and bounce rates, it also gives you insights into what people think of your brand by telling you what they’ve been looking for to find you.

To see this for yourself, log in to Google Analytics, click on the “Traffic Sources” tab and then click “Keywords.” You’ll see a list of the top searches visitors typed into Google that led them to your website. Specifically, this gives you a strong indication of whether or not visitors understand the products associated with your brand and what differentiates you from your competitors.

If people find the Nike website by searching for “sneakers” or “golf balls,” that’s not really a strong indicator of brand awareness, compared to “Nike sneakers” or simply, “Nike.”

Run Brand Awareness Campaigns

A brand awareness campaign is an ideal way to increase brand visibility. And when you run that campaign in a digital space, it’s a perfect tool for measuring that brand awareness. Your ad’s cost-per-click, its number of shares, its number of comments and, in the case of video ads, the number of video playthroughs it gets, are all indicators of how well your brand is doing with your target audience.

Maintaining Your Brand’s Presence

When you’re working on brand awareness for your company, keep the long game in mind. Too many companies blitz the market with a sudden surge in ads and then seem to check “brand awareness” off their to-do lists and move on.

A sudden surge in website visits from a viral video can be very exciting, but much like scoring a touchdown in the first play of the game, each gain should be something you build on with subsequent plays. The talented consultants at Hawke Media have a tremendous amount of experience helping new companies rise from obscurity to dominate their markets, as well as helping other established leaders to build on their presence.

If you want to know where your budget would best be spent in building your brand and the best ways to measure it for your specific market, just ask for a free consultation .

David Weedmark is a published author and e-commerce consultant. He is an experienced JavaScript developer and a former network security consultant.

QuestionPro makes measuring brand awareness a breeze from creating the survey & distributing it, to analyzing the results!

How to measure brand awareness

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What is brand awareness?

Brand awareness is the level of consciousness consumers have about a brand or a product. A brand awareness survey measures the capacity of a consumer to recognize a brand image and associate it with the products or services that a particular brand is offering.

Learn how to measure brand awareness and how to leverage brand awareness survey questions to gather data and make smart decisions for enhancing awareness of your brand.

Are you looking for effective ways to measure brand awareness for your company?

Measuring brand awareness with online surveys

You probably want a method that’s inexpensive. Yet, you also need a method that allows you to analyze data so you can make changes based on survey responses.

You can start measuring brand awareness by creating and distributing a survey with online software. An online survey platform helps you create and distribute surveys fast. Respondents can complete your survey on the go and data is sent directly to you in real time. QuestionPro’s online survey software makes it easy to gauge brand awareness with report generation tools. Get visual tools like graphs and charts that reflect the responses to your survey — all within the online platform.

No more scrolling through emails looking for individual survey responses or tracking down participants for a pen and paper survey. Instead, the responses to your survey to determine awareness come right to you for easy analysis.

The brand awareness survey creation process

QuestionPro gives you over 50 survey templates that you can customize to your brand standards. Choose a template and change the fonts and colors to match your brand guidelines. Add or update any questions you want to ask your respondents. Don’t want to work with a template? Start from scratch and build the survey that meets your exact needs.

Once you finish creating your survey for brand awareness, you can distribute the survey. Select from a variety of methods to distribute the newly-created survey. Digital methods include social media, email surveys, and QR codes. You can even choose to print your survey onto signs and flyers for physical distribution.

By using QuestionPro, you can start to analyze your results as soon as they arrive. The built-in real-time summary gives you a preview of your survey data as respondents complete the questions. Looking for advanced analysis of survey responses? Simply export your results to SPSS or Excel for advanced data management.

Brand awareness survey questions example

One of the first questions you should be asking is how recognizable a particular product is in a certain industry.

Features/Characteristics

After you’ve discovered the leading products in the market, it’s extremely beneficial to ask what sort of features made that product stand out.

Channel Distribution

Ask respondents where they have seen the products they remember most. Was is on a television ad? Product placement in a movie? A promoted social media post?

Frequency

Get an idea of how well a product makes an impact by asking respondents how often they encounter the products. Be sure to ask if the product was in an ad or if they recognize it organically.

Starting Your Survey

All you need to begin creating surveys for brand awareness is a QuestionPro account. Getting started for free is easy. Watch our video to learn more about the steps to create a survey, which include:

  • Step 1: B Create a free QuestionPro account to begin.
  • Step 2: Choose “Create a Survey.”
  • Step 3: Select the creation method you need. You can choose a template from the survey library, upload your own questions, or just simply start with a blank template.

Aided and unaided brand awareness survey questions

With a brand awareness survey, you get to know the overall awareness people have about your brand or product. However, to precisely measure brand awareness, you need to test aided and unaided brand awareness survey questions in your survey.

While writing an aided brand awareness question, you insert your brand name in the answer option along with few other known brands to understand if they recognize it.

Example: Which of the following candies have you tried? (select all that apply)

  • Lifesavers
  • Skittles
  • (Your Brand)
  • Twizzlers
  • Tootsie Pop

An unaided brand question is constructed in such a manner that it gives you a clear insight into your brand awareness. A question with a comment box (open-ended question) is usually used in the unaided brand awareness question without mentioning the brand name anywhere in the question.

Example: Please write down all the candy names you have tried so far?

When you measure brand awareness – things to consider

At QuestionPro, we offer a lot of custom survey solutions to meet your needs. Before you begin creating surveys, ask yourself these important questions:

  • What is our target audience?
  • What products will we feature in our survey?
  • How will we use the data collected to increase brand awareness?
  • What questions will increase survey participation?
  • Do we need to offer an incentive for increased participation?

Measuring brand awareness – the QuestionPro process

The value of retaining an existing customer over acquiring a new one is significantly higher. Below are some of the methods to collect the voice of the customer.

How to measure brand awareness

The more we see something, the more familiar we are with it. Even if we don’t engage, just the reoccurring exposure to it builds our awareness. The same thing happens with CPG brands. In other words, there is a direct relationship between branded product distribution and brand awareness.

Brand Awareness Definition

In fact, when it comes to CPGs, a good brand awareness definition might be when consumers remember your brand’s distinguishing characteristics. These include the logo or colors on the packaging, in a certain category, whether they buy it or not. The definition of brand awareness can be as simple as familiarity of a brand, eliciting the response, “Yes, I’ve seen that brand before.”

One of the great advantages of bricks and mortar retail stores is their ability to put your brand in front of the shopper. You, as a consumer brand builder, have the opportunity to be part of the sea of brands their customers are exposed to every day. Hopefully, they will have a notion to try out your brand on impulse or as an alternative to the brand that let them down. This is very hard to duplicate online.

This is why so many CPG brand builders want their products in bricks and mortar stores. When you are talking real, physical products, just being there not only promotes your brand awareness. But it also reinforces your prospects familiarity with it. When your brand is on sale, or they are shopping for a new brand in your category, they are more likely to choose yours simply because they see it every time they shop. This builds credibility and significantly softens the transition to a new brand. Your brand is not a stranger!

How to Measure Brand Awareness of CPG Branded Products

Sales

The best way to measure brand awareness is sales. In the retail industry, we’re talking barcode scans. How many times was your brand scanned at check out? The Nielsen ratings for retail can make or break your brand. They are a dependable measure of brand awareness for CPGs. No awareness, no sales!

Brand awareness and brand recall are easily confused, and some use the words interchangeably. But, specifically, brand awareness is the ability to identify a product category when shown a brand. Beverage? Think Coca-Cola . Brand recall is the ability of a consumer to think of, or recall, a particular brand when its product category is mentioned. Coffee? Think Starbucks. Jeans? Think Levi’s. Wine? Think Barefoot.

This is why it is so important that your name, logo, and packaging help your potential customer and your return customer quickly and easily locate your brand among the hundreds of others offered.

Retail Store’s Inventory and Reordering Software

Another measure of brand awareness is the retail store’s own inventory and reordering software. The program knows when your products arrived into the store. It also knows when they were scanned out of the store. This interval is crucial. If it’s too long, you can be discontinued.

So, here then is the dilemma for the new CPG producer. How do you get your products to move quickly from the store’s warehouse through the checkout counter? Without brand awareness, you don’t have a chance. But you don’t really achieve brand awareness until you’ve been in the store for some time. So it’s a “Catch 22.” Brand awareness is a function of time, but with too much time, there is a chance of discontinuance.

How to Build Brand Awareness

Advertising

Some CPG brand builders rely on advertising to overcome this dilemma. Others rely on price. But the best solution we have seen is in-store demos where the customers of that store taste or test your products.

Worthy Cause Marketing

Another approach to develop brand awareness we discovered dramatically helped our initial sales was supporting worthy causes. What we call “Worthy Cause Marketing” is a classic example of building brand awareness and brand recall. We identified local worthy causes that had members who were also our target market and who lived in the proximity of the stores in which our products were sold. By supporting those local fundraisers with goods and services, we made their members familiar with our products. We made them aware of their value, and gave them a social reason to choose our brand.

Thinking Local

Lastly, we discovered that when it comes to CPG’s, all retail sales are local retail sales. Even if you have distribution in a giant chain or box store company, your sales are store by store. That’s because your brand recognition is store by store. For instance, whatever brand awareness you may have bought through advertising does you no good in a store you are not in yet.

This is why, when it comes to building brand awareness, it’s important to start small, learn all the potential sales stoppers that are awaiting you, and remove them one by one. By starting small, you will learn lessons about what you have to do to keep your products on the shelf. Remember, brand awareness is a function of rote. So, if you are not there in the first place or run out of stock after you’ve been there, your brand’s awareness in the minds of your customers takes a big hit.

Also, you can’t be discontinued until after you are in the store the first time. So don’t go in the store until you know what is necessary to stay in the store! The more stores you can get into and stay in, the more brand awareness you will build. Distribution builds brand awareness. And brand awareness builds sales!

Brand awareness describes the extent to which customers, prospects and the general public are able to recognize and recall a brand.

It is the first step in engaging potential customers/clients and is often the most crucial. Measuring brand awareness, noting how readily the brand comes to mind and monitoring how this changes over time can be a very effective way of measuring the overall health of a brand.

During a typical brand tracking study, brand awareness is measured in 3 different ways:

  1. First mention (or “top-of-mind” recall)
  2. Spontaneous recall
  3. Prompted recognition

Measures of spontaneous brand recall

The first two are open questions where the respondent is invited to write down the names of brands they are aware of. It is extremely important to make sure that the respondent is clear on exactly what product/service category you want them to answer for. It is usually a good idea to include a brief description of the category first in order to make sure.

Example:

Q1. When thinking about manufacturers of industrial vacuum cleaners (vacuum cleaners designed for use in the workplace, including construction sites, factories and workshops), which is the first brand that comes to mind?

Q2. Can you name any other manufacturers of industrial vacuum cleaners?

  1. _________
  2. _________
  3. _________
  4. _________
  5. _________
  6. _________
  7. _________
  8. _________
  9. _________
  10. _________

You can well imagine that if you just asked about manufacturers of vacuum cleaners you might get a very different list of brands.

Making it onto the list of brands recalled shows that the association between the brand and the product/service category is strong in the respondent’s mind. Being the first brand that comes to mind in a product category is a huge advantage, as it shows that your brand dominates the association with that product/service category.

Even just making it onto the list of brands recalled is an important step. In most studies, respondents will only recall an average of about 3-4 brands (although this can be higher when talking to specialists).

This explains why competition for headspace is often fierce, as winning a spot on someone’s shortlist generally means knocking another brand off.

How to measure brand awareness

Brand awareness is a term that’s hard to ignore for newcomer marketers and entrepreneurs. It seems to be everywhere, yet, it’s not that easy to understand and even harder to measure.

In this article, we’ll break down the metrics behind brand awareness, and look at how to measure and improve them.

What is brand awareness?

Brand awareness defines the extent to which consumers are familiar with the qualities or image of a particular brand of goods or services. High brand awareness is a goal for every company. It’s obviously helpful when people recognize your brand’s logo, recall your brand when they think about your industry, and use its name in everyday conversations.

Brand awareness is the result of good marketing and PR. Establishing, measuring, and increasing brand awareness is an ongoing process – and it’s far from an easy one.

The most challenging aspect of brand awareness is that it’s a rather vague concept. For anyone who advocates for hard numbers and heartless maths, brand awareness will look like something that’s easier to neglect. Yet, just because something is hard to measure, doesn’t mean that it’s not worth pursuing. Quite the opposite, and this is why:

Brand awareness fosters trust – it’s rare that anyone buys a product from an unknown company.

Brand awareness creates communities of loyal customers determined to advocate for the brand: think Apple, Tesla, Urban Decay, Dr Martens, Oatly… Whatever your product or service is, you can build such a community and benefit hugely from it.

Brand awareness creates brand equity: people pay more due to higher perceived value, what the brand stands for, or what the brand symbolizes.

Brand awareness is valuable and worth measuring. And the easiest way to measure it is through social listening.

What is social listening? How can it help measure brand awareness?

Social listening is the monitoring of social media, news sites, blogs, forums, and web pages for mentions of your brand. In fact, it doesn’t have to be your brand – you can monitor the Internet for mentions of your own name, your product, your CEO, or your ex-lover. However, when it comes to brand awareness, it makes more sense to monitor your brand.

Social listening is not a manual task. There are plenty of great social media monitoring tools, such as Awario, that do the monitoring for you.

A social media monitoring/listening tool collects all online mentions of your brand, and creates a graph that shows you how much people are talking about you and how this has changed over time. This is a top graph on the screenshot below.

How to measure brand awareness

You discover how much people talk about you, how much they recommend your brand in their blog posts and reviews and mention you in social conversations and forums. This is not a direct representation of how much people know your brand, but it’s pretty close. Especially, if you consider that the more people talk about your brand, the more the overall brand awareness increases.

Speaking of which, there is another metric that represents how much people hear about your brand from others. This number is usually much bigger, as you bump into the same brand multiple times a day. Just recall how many times you saw mentions of SpaceX during the launch of Crew Dragon. The metric is called Reach (in Awario), and you can see it represented as the bottom graph in the screenshot above.

It doesn’t hurt to observe how Reach changes over time in order to assess the result of your marketing campaigns or any other events on your level of brand awareness.

Is any brand awareness good?

People often say that there is no such thing as bad publicity. However, you might disagree with this (I do). In this case, check the sentiment behind the talk about your brand. In Awario, there is a Sentiment Analysis feature. The tool breaks down mentions of your brand into positive, negative, and neutral, and shows you – you guessed it – the graph.

How to adequately assess brand awareness?

So you own a beauty parlor in San Francisco. You got a social listening tool, created an alert for your brand name, and discovered that X number of people talk about you. How do you know if this is a good result? Surely, if the number is bigger than last month (or the same month last year to account for seasonality), you're making a progress. However, there is also another way: you can benchmark your results against your competition.

To do that, create alerts for your main competitors, and jump to the Share of Voice metric. It will show you how much people talk about you compared to your main competitors, which will give you a much clearer idea of where your brand is at.