How to Measure Brand Awareness and Why You Need It

December 1, 2017 ・ 9 min read

Which metrics should you focus on? What is important? What is just a vanity metric that will not tell you anything about the state of your business?

Measuring brand awareness can be a piece of cake, provided you are prepared for the task.

Once you know which metrics to follow, you can measure brand awareness, tweak your campaigns and observe the impact of brand awareness campaigns on your business.

  • How to measure brand awareness?
  • The benefits of measuring brand awareness
  • All you have to know about measuring brand awareness
  • How to measure brand awareness?

    There are a few ways brand awareness can be measured, for example:

    • conducting surveys to measure customer experience
    • tracking certain types of website traffic over time
    • monitoring mentions of your brand name across the web to measure media coverage
    • measuring the media value of your earned content

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    To obtain a comprehensive understanding of your brand awareness, I recommend using a combination of the above-mentioned approaches.

    1. Measure brand awareness with media monitoring tools

    Measuring awareness relies on what your existing and potential customers are saying about your brand. That’s why a social media listening tool is enormously helpful when it comes to measuring brand awareness. The brand awareness metrics are based on data from Brand24, a top social listening tool, according to Buffer.

    Brand24 offers a 14-day free trial, no credit card required!

    Which brand awareness metrics can you measure with Brand24?

    Track your volume of mentions

    Whenever users that are not affiliated with – or sponsored by – your brand, mention you online, they produce user-generated content; this is earned media.

    Volume of mentions, measure brand awareness

    Unlike paid media (sponsored sources, such as Instagram influencers that you’ve recruited for Instagram influencer marketing) or owned media (like your company blog), earned media is free and an important way to measure awareness. People can only talk about your brand if they’re aware of it.

    The greater the amount of earned media you receive, the greater your general level of brand awareness.

    Track volume of discussions about you!

    Track your engagement levels

    Engagement chart, measure brand awareness

    Social media engagement is measured by the number of interactions for online mentions of your brand. This includes likes, shares, and comments that these posts have received. Track levels of interaction for posts that mention your brand name and compare them with dates of surges in buzz for your brand. There may be a particular product or aspect of your branding that is not only increasing your brand awareness but also a driving force in sales.

    Like this post about new chocolate covered potato chips from Lay’s, which has gotten a significant amount of engagement.

    measure brand awareness

    Track your Social Media Reach

    Measuring Social Media Reach gives you an idea of the number of times a post that mentions your brand could have been viewed. Social media reach is different from your volume of mentions because it measures the number of views for mentions of your brand, as opposed to the number of mentions themselves.

    Estimated Social Media Reach measure brand awareness

    You can measure social media reach for a social media post or for a social media account. Automate the process with a media monitoring tool like Brand24 – estimated values for Social Media Reach are calculated automatically by the tool as it searches for mentions of your brand across the web, providing other significant metrics like those mentioned above (and below!).

    Measure social media reach over time!

    Analyze the sentiment of conversations about your brand for extra credit

    Measuring brand awareness tells you about your brand recall and brand recognition. But your brand can be recognized and recalled for either good reasons or bad reasons.

    Sentiment analysis graph in social listening tool, measure brand awareness

    One of the top indicators of brand awareness is measured by the number of times your brand comes up in conversation. Take this even further by evaluating the sentiment of these conversations. Do people associate your brand with positive emotions or negative emotions?

    Analyze the context of these conversations to find out if there is something specific that people like or dislike about your brand. Fans of the brand JĀSÖN seem to appreciate the health-conscious selection of products they offer.

    measure brand awareness

    Social listening– AKA media monitoring – lets you kill 2 birds with 1 stone. Leverage a media monitoring tool like Brand24 (free-to-try) and track the volume of mentions for your brand, engagement levels, and social media reach. Analyze these conversations to gauge your brand reputation and learn what you need to do to improve it.

    Analyze the sentiment with a dedicated tool!

    2. Conduct a brand awareness survey

    Working with focus groups and conducting your own brand awareness survey. Survey random selections of people and see if they have ever heard of your brand, and whether they can identify or recognize it.

    It’s also a good idea to reach out to your customers directly, whether it’s via e-mail, on-line surveys, over the phone, face-to-face, or on your website. Ask them how they heard about you.

    This gives you insight into your levels of brand recall and brand recognition among customers, and also tells you how people heard about you.

    3. Keep an eye on your web traffic over time

    Observe direct traffic

    Direct traffic refers to site visitors who either found your site by entering your website address directly into the search bar, have your site bookmarked in their browser, or landed on your website by clicking on links that are not tracked, i.e., e-mail marketing.

    Direct traffic inside Google Analytics, measure brand awareness

    If users are able to enter your URL directly into any browser address bar, this indicates that your brand has good brand recall, which is a significant part of measuring brand awareness.

    Observe referral traffic

    Referral traffic in Google Analytics, measure brand awareness

    Referral traffic refers to site visitors who come from direct links on other sites. When an external website provides a link to your website in their content, and a visitor clicks on it and is taken to your site, this visitor will be counted as Referral Traffic in Google Analytics.

    Keep an eye on your website traffic over time.

    Once you increase your direct traffic and referrals, it would be much easier to come up in Google’s search results.

    An increase in direct traffic indicates growth in brand recall – people don’t enter URLs directly into their address bars unless they know where it’s taking them. An increase in referral traffic indicates growth in the number of external web pages that are linking back to your website. This is good for SEO and tells you where your website visitors are coming from.

    4. Check the search volume data for your brand

    Your search volume data tells you how often people search for your brand.

    Tools like SemRush and Google Trends not only help you optimize SEO, but they also allow you to check the monthly search volume for your brand.

    Search volume in SemRush, measure brand awareness

    Knowing how often people search for your brand tells you how good your brand recall is. This is tricky if your brand name is really generic, like Dove

    Social listening helps you work around this problem by creating more refined searches – so you can exclude results about the gorgeous Dove Cameron, actual flying doves, and (The Artist Formerly Known As) Prince’s hit song when you’re measuring awareness for a brand with a generic name, like Dove.

    5. Measure the share of voice

    The share of voice is one of the most important metrics when it comes to measuring the results of a PR campaign.

    The share of voice is also indispensable when it comes to brand awareness measurement.

    The share of voice will indicate what percentage of the whole online discussion was initiated by your social media profile.

    You can calculate the share of voice by yourself. To do that, track the total number of mentions for your competitors and your brand and calculate the percentage of the share of voice is about your brand.

    Or, to make the whole process easier, take a look into the brand monitoring tool dashboard. Brand24 automatically calculates the share of voice and presents the data inside the Analysis tab.

    print screen showing calculated voice of share for separate social media accounts, a way to measure brand awareness

    Check important metrics, such as share of voice, for free!

    6. Track backlinks to your website

    If your website has a solid number of referring backlinks, it’s a reliable source of content. You might be an authority within your industry and run a page where people look for certain pieces of information.

    Lack of backlinks to your website is an indicator of several problems. The content you offer might not meet the audience needs or is unreliable. Every company wants to be seen as a reliable business leader. Providing your customers with pieces of content they find useful will make measuring brand awareness easier.

    The benefits of measuring brand awareness

    Brand recognition is based on the customer’s ability to identify or tell a brand apart from others. This doesn’t necessarily mean that customers remember the name of the brand, but simply that they’re able to recognize it.

    shelves full of different brands of skincare products, measure brand awareness

    Brand awareness plays a key role in customer decision-making process. When faced with several brands, brand awareness makes certain choices a little more obvious than others. This helps consumers reach their purchase decisions (‘I want that one – the one with the red cap’).

    Measure your brand awareness with a media monitoring tool!

    All you have to know about measuring brand awareness

    Hopefully, with our series on brand awareness, you will get all the necessary insights on the topic.

    Creating campaign that builds awareness of your brand is not a piece of cake. But is worth the effort.

    Firstly, all brand awareness activities help you reach your target audience faster. Since awareness campaign is mostly focus on providing the right message to the right audience, ultimately the traffic to your website will rise.

    Brand awareness starts with your owned content but essential part of the process is measuring the media value. Focusing on building and improving brand awareness will help you with your outbound marketing tactics. It will become easier to promote your content and increase your web traffic.

    Increased web traffic will translate into a higher number of customers at the top of your sales funnel. Not all of them will convert into paying customers, but overall, the number of clients will increase.

    Brand awareness can help you grow your business and build long-lasting relations with your customers. Returning customers will translate into higher revenues.

    But implementing brand awareness strategies can also have a positive effect on not tangible aspects of your business.

    Brand awareness helps build community that will support your brand through thick and thin.

    The process of building brand awareness will likely make you a leader in your niche. That can have substantial business benefits.

    Hopefully, you will follow our brand awareness guide! Take a look at the rest of the blog posts about brand awareness!

    8 marketing tactics to build brand awareness

    How to increase brand awareness?

    How to measure the results of a brand awareness campaign?