Branding: How to Know If It’s Working
If you’re a marketing professional, you know how difficult it is to explain the impact of branding and brand awareness to those who are number driven.
These decision makers are comfortable when metrics clearly define profitability.
If you’re a business owner, it could be frustrating trying to figure out if your branding efforts are paying off, how long does it take to gain traction, and what's the return on investment.
But just because branding can’t be perfectly measured, doesn't mean it’s not valuable.
In fact, effective branding helps build trust and creates loyal customers, amongst other things - two of the most important factors that contribute to the success of any business.
Before diving into how to know if your branding efforts are working, it will be helpful to touch on the difference between branding and marketing and defining brand awareness ROI.
Difference between branding and marketing
Branding and marketing are not the same thing, yet most people use those terms interchangeably.
Marketing is the set of tactics, tools, and strategies used to get customers to buy your product or service. Marketing activities such as social ads, emails, and commercials can be directly tied to sales.
Branding is your company’s identity. It’s what makes your company unique and sets it apart from competitors. It defines what your company stands for - its mission and its values.
Built over time, branding is what gets customers to know, like, and trust your company. These are crucial factors that heavily influence sales.
Branding takes time and consistency, and must come before any marketing efforts because if consumers don’t know you exist, then no amount of money used for marketing will make a difference.
Brand Awareness ROI
Though a difficult metric to define, brand awareness does have a ROI. Branding itself does not drive conversions. Rather, it is an important assistant that makes all your marketing efforts much more effective.
Two things to keep in mind: building brand awareness takes time and effort and tracking metrics needs to be done consistently over time to properly and accurately identify significant patterns.
How long it takes to see if your branding efforts are working depends largely on factors such as the size of your company, the complexity of your product or service and how aggressive your branding strategy is.
Are your branding efforts working?
So how to measure your branding effectiveness?
Things like social media following, website traffic, and advertising sales are certain indicators that your branding efforts are paying off. The key, again, is to give it time and be consistent.
But perhaps one of the most powerful tools to measure branding effectiveness is conducting surveys periodically. These surveys can provide valuable insights on things like your brand positioning in the marketplace, the emotional connection between your customers and your brand and how well your branding campaigns are remembered.