Data Science has transformed the way marketers reach their customers today by serving as a great tool for increasing Brand Awareness.
Whether it is a small local business selling stationery supplies or a supermarket chain with stores all over the country, reaching out to your target audience is the key to survival and success. The idea is to educate your potential customers about the products and services you are selling and to create a brand around it.
Your brand must be promoted in such a manner that it stands out among its competitors and resonates a familiar image in the customers’ mind, urging them to make the final purchase. This journey from creating a brand image for the consumers to its translation into the final sale is all dependent on the brand awareness strategies one undertakes as a smart marketer.
Understanding Brand Awareness
Brand awareness determines how conscious existing, as well as potential customers, are about your brand. This entails their ability to recognize, recall and relate to your product while they make key purchase decisions. Moreover, brand awareness also involves an effective education program for the consumers. This not only allows them to understand the brand’s goals and potential to relate to it but also ensures that they can associate the brand with the general product or service. For instance, the Band-Aid Company is the first thing that would come to your mind when you think about getting a bandage; so much so that you start calling these bandages in general with this brand name you associate it with.
Types of Brand Awareness
Apparently, brand awareness may seem like a simple process of letting your customer know about your brand. However, in reality, it is a complex as well as a complicated process carried out by marketers in a systematic manner. In understanding brand awareness it is important to differentiate between its two different types: brand recognition and brand recall.
The consumer’s ability to pick up or recognize your product out of the list of many other similar ones is a sign of effective brand recognition. This requires the customers to have some prior knowledge of the brand, such that they can differentiate it with others. This is mostly applicable in a supermarket situation, where a customer is standing in front of a long rack of dishwashing liquids and can pick up your brand amongst them.
The brand recall involves the customer using his or her memory to recall or recover an image of your brand when the general product or service category of the brand is mentioned. The successful application of a brand recall strategy can be observed when asked about a product category, such as a shampoo, a customer, can recall your brand’s name from memory, without it being physically present on the shelf.
Why is brand awareness important to a business?
Brand awareness is an important component of a business’ marketing strategy and is the key to its success. Nowadays, as markets are becoming more competitive, customers demand more information about the products they wish to buy. Hence, it has become vital for brands to stand out in this competition by setting their products or services apart from their competitors. This whole process requires these brands to establish key communication channels with their customers to make them aware of their products or services. As customers become more familiar with a brand’s product or service they are more likely to select them in a buying context. This will lead to more sales for that particular brand, and consequently more profits as well as better opportunities for further growth.
Brand Awareness and Big Data
As digital technology is involving, brands are going global, and the Internet has opened up better avenues to reach the targeted audience, the vitality of big data in increasing brand awareness has improved. Reports from comScore state that in November 2012 retail e-commerce spending exceeded $20 billion, and was about 14% above the corresponding figures of the previous year. Moreover, 1.5 billion users involved in this were members of social communities all around the globe. In addition to this, around 80% of these individuals used social media networks for these improved interactions. The rise of the social media and e-commerce has created new challenges and opportunities for online marketers. As more information is generated, shared and processed, the importance of big data is analyzing business opportunities in markets both at home and abroad has increased.
Why is Big Data Analytics important for Brand Marketing?
As a business marketer, you must realize the potential of big data in innovating brand marketing strategies. Data science allows marketers, today, with the opportunity to understand the diverse needs of their customers all around the globe. Moreover, availability of data regarding consumer behaviours and shopping preferences makes it easier for brands to identify what products or service their target customers want and what is the best way to reach them.
A marketing strategy infused with big data analytics has the following advantages:
- Almost every brand experiments with their marketing strategy, especially when they are dealing with customers abroad or within a more specialized market segment. Investing in such an experimental marketing strategy can be both tricky as well as risky. You might not be aware of the special characteristics of the new group of customers you plan on targeting. This is primarily why investing huge amounts of money in marketing campaigns abroad is usually viewed with a lot of apprehensions. However, big data analytics reduce this risk for brands and help them in knowing more about the preferences of their new potential customers.
- Big data analytics also allow a brand to look back to reflect on and correct its mistakes. It is a good way for marketers to get insights into their marketing flaws or weak areas, and work on them to find the right marketing direction.
- Big data analytics make a brand more customer-centric by allowing the marketers to interact with their target market. It fills the feedback gap that marketers usually face while designing their marketing strategies. When you are more aware of what your customers want and can yield valuable data on customer response as well their interaction with the product, you will be more able to design products and services that match their needs.
- As a marketer, it is pertinent that you keep on looking for new opportunities. This can be new markets to target or perhaps creating brand awareness for a group which was previously unaware of your brand. By being able to track down customer shopping patterns through data analytics, you can obtain new insights about your target audience and capture a greater market area.
Five tips for using Data Science for better Brand Awareness
There are several ways in which businesses can use the potential of data science for increasing the awareness about their brand. Here is a list of five cool tips that marketers must definitely consider while designing their brand awareness marketing strategies.
#1 Publishing relevant content
This might seem like an extremely obvious suggestion, but there is more to understand about content than it is apparent. According to Consultancy OC&C, consumers are 26 percent more likely to respond to messages which are tailored to their personal interests. In addition to this, they also claim that consumers are also 22 percent more likely to engage when these messages are specific to their location. Hence, it might be more useful to use words such as ‘pants’ when a brand is trying to sell trousers in the United States. This is where data on location becomes pertinent. For instance, Snapchat introducing location filters is a great way to target customers in different locations.
The key thing to remember about designing great marketing content is to personalize it. An interesting strategy to follow in this case would be to introduce guest content on your site. As a marketer, you can first use data analytics to narrow down the location and preferences of your target audience. Then, find social media influencers or guest bloggers from the same area to help you in generating more personalized content for your audience. For instance, Moms-to-be is more likely to relate to the content on a maternity shop website, if it is produced by a mother. There is a greater probability of them being able to relate to this content, and then associating these new found feelings of familiarity and inclusion with the brand.
#2 Using e-mail data
As marketers, you would almost always require some form of e-mail marketing. For instance, you want to notify your consumers about a new discount offer or perhaps provide them with some formal information which cannot be transmitted appropriately on a social media platform. In such a case, data on e-mail marketing can be beneficial. There are many software, which can help you in tracking where your customers live, how often they check their emails, and consequently, what is the best way to engage with them. You can use this new information not only to target them online but offline as well; especially when you make decisions about where to buy adspace.
#3 Tracking your store performance
You can use big data to analyze your performance both in physical and online stores. For physical stores, you can install in-store sensors to check what do people look for when they enter your store. This can be extremely helpful when you are designing your store layout or display shelf. In addition to this, you can use the same strategy for your online store by checking which sections of your website are visited the most and which products do consumers prefer. You can use this online data to redesign your website and make it more user-friendly.
Another smart approach would be to combine both these data sources and analyze them together. You can narrow down the most popular products sold online and then create separate selling spaces for them in your physical store, or perhaps improve the display of those who are not selling well. In addition to this, online data can help you in determining the exact locations where the demand for your products is great; you can then start looking for store space in these locations. Hence, real user data can really help you in optimizing your stores and improving customer experience, whether it is offline or online.
#4 Focusing on the right social media
Some brands do well on Facebook alone, and others are better suited to Instagram. With the growth of existing as well as new social media platforms, businesses are finding new avenues to interact with their customers. Hence, it is important to determine which social media network is more suited to your brand. If you are a business, which realizes more on visual content in targeting your audience, such as a travel agency, perhaps Instagram is a great way to meet your audience. Moreover, for B2B businesses Twitter might be a better place to meet their customers. Data analytics will help you in tracking where your referral traffic comes from and on which network are you doing better. This will definitely help you in streamlining your social media marketing strategy.
#5 Collaborate with other businesses
Data analytics can help you in identifying potential collaborators for your brand. There might be several businesses both online and offline, which share the same goals as you do and they may not be directly competing with your business. Hence, a great idea will be to join hands with them, in reaching both yours and their target audience. You can organize online contests, real-life events or even take part in the same campaigns as they do in this process.
To Sum Up
Brand awareness is the first and foremost step in the marketing strategy for every business. It is important to reach your target customer, inform them about your brand and learn more about their preferences, to do well in the competitive markets today. Consequently, this is where the power of data analytics can be harnessed most effectively. By allowing marketers the opportunity to learn more about their target customers and making brands more informed with their markets, data analytics is, hence, the most innovative way for increasing brand awareness for any business nowadays.