A popular saying goes thus, out of mind, out of sight. Meaning those who have seen our business before will forget about us if they do not consistently see things from our business. If we are not constantly up in their faces, we will be forgotten.
If not regularly showing up means being forgotten, not showing up at all means we do not exist; nobody knows about us, nobody cares about us, so nobody needs us. It is not enough to have a great product or service. People must know that it exists for them to want it.
Brand awareness is a vital activity required for selling successfully. It drives repeat purchases, increases market share and helps consumers decide between us and our competitors.
What is Brand Awareness?
It is the degree of people’s familiarity with a brand, what it stands for and the products or services it offers. It is a measure of how well our brand is known within our market segment.
It involves the ability of consumers to recognize and recall from memory, knowledge of our brand when in contact with display or mention of relative values and offerings.
Let us do a little exercise for clarity. Look at the words below and attach a business to it.
Whatever business you wrote down, that is the brand you are most aware of at the moment. Give it extra thought and you might be able to recall a few more relegated to the back of your mind. Others you will not remember till you come in contact with actual elements of that brand again.
Here are a few ways we can build brand awareness
Target a Specific Audience
Awareness requires consistency to become effective and there is hardly ever enough budget to reach the whole world let alone do it repeatedly. During the strategy phase of our brand development, we would have defined a niche audience that we have a great measure of certainty they will be interested in our offerings. We should target that specific audience.
Build an Effective Website
An effective website helps to store information and contact details of our target audience who visit the site, allowing us to reach out to them repeatedly. It includes having a lead magnet, newsletter integration, analytics, search engine optimization and mobile responsive among others.
Publish Useful Content
The benefits of publishing a helpful blog post on our website consistently are numerous. It gives the target audience a reason to visit our website regularly, helps us become a thought leader in our industry and increase our appearance on search engines.
Have a Strong Social Media Presence
Professionally branding our social media pages and sharing daily activities that occur within our brand on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn will help us connect thousands or even millions of our target audience online. With a strategic approach, we can turn visitors into potential buyers.
Pay for Social Media Advertising
Reaching a large number of people organically through social media presence can be a slow, painstaking process. Paying for adverts on social networks can help achieve exponential results. The adverts can also help redirect a larger number of a specific target audience to our website where we can collect their contact information.
Retarget Previous Audiences
Digital adverts that retarget audiences who have visited our website or interacted with our social media pages will stimulate brand recall and encourage prospects to come back to the website, eventually leading them to make a purchase repeatedly.
Sending emails sequentially to all the contacts we saved from our website will keep them constantly aware of our brand. The newsletters can contain information about new blog posts on our website, activities from our social media pages, our product/services and more.
Some other brand awareness activities that can be used in tandem with those above includes; contests and giveaways, audio podcasts, video tutorials, sponsoring a great cause or an event, investing in promotional merchandise, using hashtags on social media, among others.
However, before we can effectively build brand awareness, our brand needs to have a defined strategy, a clear verbal identity and visual identity. To mention a few, define our brand purpose, promise and values, create a personality for the brand with culture and character, define and segment our target audience, have a consistent choice of words and tone of voice for our messages, create a simple and memorable logo, colour scheme and tagline that can easily and must be replicated on all medium of communication.
Remember, out of sight is out of mind and without sight at all, we do not exist. Building brand awareness can take time, effort, trial and error and a lot of experimentation but we must keep at it because it is essential to the success of our brand.