The million dollar question a lot of marketers have to answer is ‘how to promote a brand to the target audience?’ Be it F&B, cosmetics, tech products or travel agents, everyone wants their brand to be known. Well, of course they do. Brand awareness is the first step towards a customer’s ultimate decision to purchase. Whether they make the purchase seconds after seeing your product on a shelf, or after months of research and deliberation, they have to be aware of your brand first.
80% of social marketers say that brand awareness is their biggest goal. So it rings true that getting awareness is often what marketers are doing. If you’re like them, you are probably doing the same and dreaming of the day when you introduce yourself and your company, people will say “Oh, that company? I’ve heard of you guys before!”
Getting brand awareness requires several key tactics, offline and online. Apart from the usual traditional advertising on print and mass media, we’ll take a look at 5 tactics that can generate brand awareness and help your brand stand out:
Google offers AdWords as their advertising platform while Bing offers BingAds. You can set your target audience, location and language, and the keywords you want to be paired with using these platforms, all according to your own budget. As per the pay-per-click (PPC) model, you’ll be charged advertising fees whenever your link is clicked.
Trivago and other hotel-booking websites are some of the best success stories when it comes to using online search ads to generate awareness. Thanks to their strategic search ads, people recognise their brands that appears every time they type in the keywords ‘hotels near me’.
A key metric to determine the strength of an influencer is the number of their social followers and engagements. But more importantly, a marketer also has to determine if the KOL’s fanbase matches the brand’s target audience. It would be weird for a fashion blogger to review yoga balls or Fan Bingbing to remind you to pay your taxes.
Taiwan computer brand Acer used influencer marketing to introduce its new Z series smartphone. Using three KOLs to fit into three target groups, Acer managed to get the right people to talk about their phones, thus generating awareness among the right target audience.
Content marketing is said to help generate 3 times more leads than traditional outbound marketing, which indicates an effective brand awareness method. It is a more organic way for people to discover your brand, which can result in brand trust and legitimacy.
Any brand can use content marketing, even beachy surfing brands like Rip Curl. This Australian brand has its own blog called The Search, where it chronicles stories, videos, and photographs seen and told by surfers themselves. With more than 100,000 subscribers on YouTube, Rip Curl invites people to join the tidal wave and do a gnarly Hang Ten.
But even without paid social media ads, your brand can still achieve awareness through organic reach and engagement. Great social media posts are friendly and entertaining. People will engage and share likeable content to the point of virality. The more shares, the bigger audience reach your brand will receive. Even if you’re a B2B brand, social media marketing should be on the list to kickstart your brand awareness process.
Take General Electric (GE) for example. You would think making a presence on social media is hard when you’re a big conglomerate and a B2B brand. But GE managed to do it using the hashtag #GEInstawalk on Instagram. One of their top posts, featuring a behind-the-scene look of their innovative technology, garnered an impressive 9,000 likes.
A brand awareness campaign is usually a mix of all 5 tactics, complementing traditional marketing tactics if the brand requires it. It can be done in-house as an internal marketing project, or through a marketing agency that understands the environment and industry. Getting professional help would also mean that your campaign is well-managed and have the right arsenal to deliver great results.
But it all comes down to the same thing; achieving brand awareness, and to stand out in a hyper-connected world of pop culture, social sharing and IoT. It is not impossible to be noticed against the noise. With the right tactics and strategy, your brand can be known and recognised among the people you wish to reach.