Awareness is like the sun. When it shines on things, they are transformed.Thich Nhat Hanh
Brand awareness is sometimes seen as a marketing buzzword in the world of strategic communication. But what does it really mean?
Put simply, it’s the a measurement of consumer consciousness or recognition of a product or company. Within that, there are multiple levels to brand awareness. First, is the product or company recognized by its name? If not, it’s lacking brand awareness. If so, it’s a step in the right direction. The next question: what qualities or characteristics are being associated with the brand? What are the defining aspects that are easy for consumers to recall?
In some historical cases, the level of brand awareness has been so strong that the brand name of a certain product has replaced the generic term.
“Can you pass me a Kleenex?”
“Why do you have a Band-Aid on your finger?”
“I can’t find my Chapstick.”
Despite being part of our everyday language, Kleenex, Band-Aid, and Chapstick are actually just industry-leading brand names for generic products – facial tissues, adhesive bandages, and lip balm, respectively. Generally, these “generic trademarks,” as they are called, actually go against the trademark holder’s intentions, though it represents market dominance or monopoly.
Okay, so these are extreme cases. Brand awareness doesn’t always have to – and rarely does – go that far. Even if you aren’t aiming to be the next Velcro (which was also originally a brand name!), you should still strive for brand awareness – whether that’s business or personal.
When considering your brand awareness strategy, keep the following things in mind:
A differentiated message will help set your brand apart from its competitors. What about your brand is special? If your brand doesn’t have anything distinctive to offer, there’s no reason for your target audience to remember it. Find your niche and make your unique claim. This helps prevent market confusion when your customers know exactly what you alone can offer them.
When consumers know what you’re offering, they’re more likely to go straight to you for their product needs, rather than researching other brands. It’s like a shortcut through the decision-making process, which can sometimes be stressful. With a strong brand and clear and consistent message, you’ll become front-of-mind for consumers – that’s your number one goal.
Speaking of that clear and consistent message, your brand is your message. When your brand is sleek and coherent, it creates harmony. That harmony is appealing for consumers, and strong branding gives you credibility – before you’ve even said a word. For this reason, you’re more likely to be viewed as trustworthy by your target audience. And according to HubSpot: “In a world where consumers rely on extensive research and others’ opinions before making a simple purchase, brand trust is everything.”
Social media is one useful way to increase brand awareness, regardless of your industry. Whether you’re an industrial engineering brand like many of our clients, a small business owner, or anything in between, you can use social media as a tool to help create recognition.
We’ve previously posted here about the benefits of a strong social media presence. Not only is it something that virtually every brand can use, it also can help create a strong community. This community can become a base of your most devoted customers, who may be quite outspoken in their loyalty. After they’ve made that bond with your brand, they’re unlikely to waver from it. The consumer loyalty aspect is another key feature of a brand-awareness creation.
If you’re interested in developing a comprehensive brand awareness campaign, we at Brieffin are here to be your partners on that journey. We invite you to learn about our roadmap and philosophy for designing your unique strategy that gives your brand the WOW! effect you’re looking for.
“Awareness is like the sun. When it shines on things, they are transformed.” When your brand exists without awareness, it’s in the dark – unknown, unseen, unspecified. Bringing awareness is the special ingredient that transforms the anonymous into the familiar.
It’s time to fall in love with brand awareness.
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