Some companies have built such a powerful brand that you could see the unbranded product and know they made it. That is excellent branding and it takes time to build not just that level of cohesiveness, but also that level of awareness.
Many smaller businesses feat that they will never have the type of brand awareness Fortune 500s have, but they can within their niche. To make it happen, you’ll need to understand brand awareness and the strategies that make it possible.
Understanding Brand Awareness
Building brand awareness makes you recognizable, so customers who love what you have to offer can show brand loyalty. When customers see elements of your brand, they should know not just what it is but what your brand stands for.
If you own a cafe in town, it’s great that they know that. But they should also know you sell the best vegan coffee on the block and celebrate “Muffin Mondays” to beat the Monday blues.
Building Brand Awareness
The good news is that you don’t need to focus specifically on building brand awareness to make it happen. You need only incorporate it into new or existing marketing strategies and campaigns.
- Build a Brand: The most important aspect of brand awareness is having that cohesive brand that customers can recognize in the first place. What is the element that ties your brand together? Is it the color, the imagery, the retro vibe of your billboard signs and decor?Note that building a brand first requires some experimentation and then consistency. Experimentation helps you test the features you think best resonate with your target market. Consistency provides the elements they can now begin to associate with your brand time after time.
- Advertising: You already invest in advertising to attract more customers. Advertising also improves brand awareness. The more often people see your brand on billboard signs, fliers, brochures, shelves and ads, the more familiar of a choice your brand becomes. Soon, you become the choice that targeted customers makes when they need a product or service you provide.When choosing ad placements, be sure to consider your channels carefully and how well they align with your target audience. For instance, if you mostly serve a senior audience, poring the bulk of your money into advertising on Instagram is probably not a wise choice. Meanwhile, Instagram ads might do wonders for clothing lines bent on not just following but creating the newest trends.
- Get on Social Media: Believe it or not, people of all ages are online. Seniors might not be hanging out on Instagram as much as millennials and generation Z, but they are online. You can find them for leisure on Facebook and for business on LinkedIn. Many also hold Twitter accounts.Find out where your tribe hangs out online and then pour money into reaching them. There are also some social media platforms that are almost a rite of passage for businesses. These include Facebook and Twitter, but choose wisely before opening an account on either one.
- Partner With Others: When it comes to partnerships, there are many appropriate choices to consider. One choice gaining popularity is partnering with influencers and affiliate marketers. These people share your product or service with their audience and help you to leverage that audience to increase trust and boost sales.You can also partner with other brands. Most experts recommend partnering with a bigger brand. Far more important is partnering with a suitable brand. For instance, if your company makes spaghetti and pasta, partner with a company that makes sauces or team up with a restaurant to create a signature dish.
- Invest in the Community: Over the past few years, millennials have emerged as the most powerful buyers in the market for most industries. This demographic has earned the title of the most generous. Not surprisingly, this generation plays close attention to the politics and philanthropic work of the companies they support and many other people have adopted this principle since.This makes investing in your community a great way to reach them, their parents, grandparents and children. You could organize the cleanup of a beach or park, sponsor the local sports team or send workers to volunteer in causes that matter most to the community. Your customers will notice.
- Remarket and Retarget: So, you used all the tips above and it worked: people now recognize your brand and ask for your products and service by name. What now? To compound the effects of all your efforts, focus on retargeting and remarketing to turn people into repeat customers and keep them.To do this, you can invest in loyalty programs or offer coupons to first-time buyers. You could also try to get contact information so you can send texts or emails to let them know when there are new promotions or sales.
The Bottom Line
Building brand awareness can be a costly investment. However, once business owners see the effects of their efforts, most say it’s worth every penny.