The Importance Of Brand Awareness


Digital Performance, Web

Brand awareness is a term that’s passed around a lot in marketing spheres. But what is it, and why is it so important? 

In short, brand awareness describes how familiar your target audience is with your company. If a friend asks you if you want to meet for a coffee, the cafe that immediately springs to mind? That’s brand awareness. If you need tissues, but always buy Kleenex? That’s brand awareness. 

Brand awareness can be broken down into three distinct layers; Recall, Recognition, and Dominance. It starts with people knowing what you do within your sector, then recognising your branding, and finally becoming their subconscious automatic choice. The fact of the matter is, nobody will buy from a company they don’t know exists. 

Nevertheless, despite the power that brand awareness holds, it’s often a step that’s skipped by businesses keen to move straight to sales. When the Zinc team proposes spending time and resources on brand awareness, our customers will often be concerned about the lack of directly trackable sales or leads. Brand Awareness doesn’t have a nice neat line from spend to conversion. It’s a long game, with rewards that are hard to see if you don’t know where to look. So, why is it key to our strategies?

A brand is the set of expectations, memories, stories and relationships that, taken together, account for a consumer’s decision to choose one product or service over another

Seth Godin

You’ll build trust

Humans naturally don’t trust something they don’t know. When a potential buyer is in their research stage, they’ll be looking for signs that your brand can be trusted with their money, deliver what they are looking for, and provide good service. Once you’ve built trust, you’ve built a community of engaged customers who are far more likely to return for another purchase, or recommend you to others. 


So, how do we do this? We provide brand awareness campaigns that reassure customers with social proof such as reviews, samples, smaller value adds such as a free download. Add a personality and a face to your brand, and show them who you are.


You’ll create an association

A third of consumers already have a brand in mind when they go shopping. By ensuring that’s you, you’ll benefit from a shorter customer journey and a better stream of qualified customers. So, our goal with a brand awareness campaign isn’t just to get an immediate sale, but to provide the customer with information that they need to understand exactly what you do and why your business is different. Then, maybe weeks later when they’re having a conversation with a friend and your service comes up, they’ll know who to go to. 


It can build a higher perceived brand value

Brand equity is something that isn’t talked about enough with small businesses. We’ve all heard the phrase ‘you’re just paying for the name’. That is brand equity – when a customer is willing to pay more, just to have a product that they have a positive brand association with. It could be due to quality, social impact, service level. This takes a long time to build, but in the end, you’re able to value your products and your brand higher. 


It can be the first and last step of the conversion process

The sales funnel has been a part of marketing theory in many forms, but it’s usually based around the same key principles. At the top are the customers who just hear who you are. Without this, there’s no progress. We know that in an average journey from first impression to conversion, there’s generally 6-8 touchpoints before there’s even an engagement. Therefore, it’s not just about being everywhere at once, but about being in the right places consistently, sometimes for a long time. Once a customer is at the end of the journey and is ready to make a buying decision, sometimes it’s that brand recognition and trust that influences where they’re purchasing. 


The tricky thing about brand awareness is that it’s not generally the campaign that leads to the conversion. However, it’s often the thing that tips the scales in your favour. It supports every other step that you’re taking, quietly providing your potential customers with a good reason to choose you. When it comes to it, and your product is being weighed up against an equivalent, a customer is going to choose a name they’ve heard of. 


We measure the success of brand awareness in conjunction with all our other marketing efforts. When we’ve been working on it for a few months, we’ll see customer journeys get shorter, direct traffic increase, brand searches go up, and overall sales improve. That’s how we know that the foundations that we’ve laid with brand awareness are paying dividends in every other channel. 

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