Saturday, September 17, 2011

Is Anyone Aware?

One of the items I mentioned last week was Brand Awareness.  What is Brand Awareness?  It is the measure of a consumer's knowledge of your very existence.  The "aggregate" level is the proportion of consumers that "know" your brand.  Why is this "level" even important?  It's important, because the creation of brand awareness is the PRIMARY goal of advertising, and it influences the behavior of the buyers of your product.  However, remember that all of your measurements of brand awareness are, at best, approximations.  They are not exact. The more measures used, the more complete your understanding of brand awareness will be.

Brand awareness is measured "simply" by showing a consumer the "brand and asking whether or not they knew of it beforehand.  Many textbooks have conceptualized brand awareness simply as the knowledge that the brand is a member of a particular product category, such as fast-food.  However, common practice says there is more than one recognition and recall measure, all of which test the brand name's association to a product category cue.

However, "knowledge" doesn't give us much data to do anything with.  So, we use three common metrics that can be measured:
  • Brand Recall - Either the brand name or both the brand name and category name are presented to survey participants.
  • Brand Recognition - The product category name is given to participants, and are then asked to recall as many brands as possible that are members of the category.
  • Top of Mind Awareness - Brand Recognition, but more specifically only the first brand recalled is recorded (called "spontaneous brand recall" by some).
These measurements can be used for creating an understanding of Brand Equity.  Brand Equity is the positive effect of the brand on the difference between the prices that the consumer is willing to pay compared to the perceived value of the benefit received by your product.  The more value, the more a consumer will pay for your product.  Brand Equity is built by brand awareness activities such as advertising, PR, and promotion.  Simply put, the more Brand Equity, the more you might be able to charge for your product.  Higher prices can lead to higher profits.  You're in the business to make money right?


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