Brand Awareness: definition, characteristics, and success stories

Very often you hear people talking about Brand Awareness and do you even know what it means?

Brand Awareness is a crucial prerequisite for consumer purchase decisions: it represents one of the fundamental aspects of business as it enables a company to be instantly recognizable and considered by the end consumer.

brand awareness campaign

If you’re seeking a strategy to develop the best brand awareness for your marketing, if you want to learn how to achieve brand awareness on Facebook, or grasp the connection between brand awareness and brand identity, this mini-guide will aim to explain:

  • what it is and why it’s essential for your business
  • the different types of brand awareness
  • how to build and measure it

What is Brand Awareness and why it matters

Brand Awareness can be likened to the magnetic pull that attracts an object of desire: it captures the customer’s attention towards a specific brand.

Brand awareness is particularly significant when growing your business and introducing new products or services, as it allows a company to stand out from its competitors.

When people are well-acquainted with a company and everything associated with its marketing, they find it easier to add the product to their cart, and the qualities of a product or service can even influence the consumer’s perception of a particular brand.

Based on what has been discussed so far, I encourage you to think about your daily life and which brand or product comes to mind first when you need to make a purchase or use a service.

This criterion will help you realize how a buyer decides to place trust in one company over another.

The goal that every brand should aim, to achieve successful Brand Awareness, is to devise an effective marketing strategy using the appropriate online, offline, and social media channels.

How does brand awareness work?

Brand awareness is a strategic marketing approach aimed at making consumers familiar with a brand or product through various channels like advertising, social media, and promotions.

By establishing a strong brand presence, companies differentiate themselves from competitors and increase the likelihood of consumer consideration and purchase. This process aligns with the traditional marketing funnel, where awareness is the initial stage.

At this level, brands captivate customers with positive experiences, sparking interest and encouraging further exploration. As potential buyers move through the funnel, transitioning from awareness to consideration and then conversion, the importance of existing brand awareness becomes evident.

Established brands have an advantage, as they’ve already introduced themselves, enabling them to focus on conveying specific, relevant information to facilitate purchase decisions.

In a crowded market, where multiple brands vie for consumer attention, being the first brand that comes to mind during product consideration is invaluable.

Established brands recognize this and invest heavily in brand awareness campaigns to solidify their associations with certain products or services. By fostering this recognition, these brands build credibility and trust, effectively influencing consumers’ purchasing decisions.

In summary, brand awareness plays a crucial role in creating consumer familiarity, aiding differentiation, and ultimately increasing the chances of purchase by capturing attention and influencing decision-making.

Brand Awareness and Brand Identity

Constructing exceptional brand awareness starts with creating a solid brand identity.

Special attention and consideration should be given to:

  • coming up with the company name
  • identifying the target audience for your business
  • using the most fitting language for your communication
  • conveying the values you wish to portray through the brand.

Once all these elements that constitute the company’s brand identity are defined, you can choose the most suitable promotion methods, both online and offline, to use for proper brand awareness.

Brands in the Era of Social Media

Do you recall the magnet concept mentioned earlier? Let me use it again in this section to elucidate the significance of social networks.

Social media have now become an integral and active part of a successful business strategy.

One crucial piece of advice you should never overlook is that today when establishing a brand, you must not underestimate the various digital platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube, as they facilitate reaching your audience more effortlessly.

Over the past few years, some statistical data has revealed that users have spent approximately two and a half hours per day online on social media sites.

It’s important to highlight that millions of subscribers no longer consider social networks as places of leisure and no longer perceive their homepages as spaces where they can post everyday information and work-related details.

Social platforms are seen as true containers where reviews, feedback, and useful information about something being sought can be left and read.

Riding this wave, the brand has the opportunity to introduce its core business to a broader target audience by collecting direct and consistent feedback on its Brand Awareness from users.

3 steps to achieve Optimal Brand Awareness

Reaching a high level of brand awareness is not simple and immediate, but is the result of carefully planned and consistent effort.

In recent years, American economist David Aaker illustrated his theory and the fundamental steps to reach the “Top of Mind,” the pinnacle of his pyramid.

brand recognition

According to an American scholar, before a consumer immediately thinks of a specific brand, there are three intermediate phases that the customer can experience:

  1. Unaware of a brand: A step in which the brand of the product is completely unknown. Your brand does not exist for the consumer.
  2. Brand recognition: A phase in which the consumer has a superficial knowledge of the product; the brand begins to become partially known in this phase.
  3. Brand recall: The word “recall” itself should make you think of a brand recall when people think of a service they need in a category you belong to.

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Offline Brand Awareness

An effective strategy for offline Brand Awareness is certainly advertising your brand on the pages of a newspaper or magazine.

You have surely heard of the crisis affecting the world of publishing and the many changes happening with digital, but there are still many consumers who remain attached to and attracted by print media.

In addition to traditional newspaper advertising, other tools that are often considered include press releases, radio, and trade shows. Many companies decide to participate in major events every year to showcase their products and expand their network of contacts.

You will surely have returned home with numerous bags full of gadgets and brochures. Among the many methods of distribution, companies focus on the giveaways that are handed out to visitors: here’s another method to achieve offline Brand Awareness.

I gadgets involve featuring the name of the organization on t-shirts, caps, pens, and calendars; every year, the promotion and development team introduces many innovations within the fairs: in USB pens, for example, high-resolution videos and photos are loaded with the aim of presenting new products.

Fairs and events always attract a large number of visitors and, above all, positive feedback: people have a face-to-face experience with the company, and in many cases, human interaction is preferred over a sponsorship on Facebook or a tweet on Twitter.

4 ways to build Online Brand Awareness

Now, let’s see how to establish proper online Brand Awareness by leveraging digital marketing, which is the most popular tool for seeking content and information.

It’s a comprehensive journey that you will undertake together with your team to ensure that your brand is as visible as possible online through various channels.

Let me propose a few to you.

Utilizing Social Networks

Before delving into the topic and attempting to understand the importance of social networks even better, I invite you to reflect and consider if they are truly useful for your target audience.

Try to determine whether it’s worth using all of them or simply consider opening a company page on a specific social platform that your audience follows closely.

Social media is an effective tool that, when used correctly, has the capacity to significantly increase your brand’s visibility. They can be used to study the visual impact of the brand and its corresponding market demand.

Knowing how to do branding involves comparing how social media is used in relation to traditional media. Social platforms have become a massive marketing channel for businesses: the concept of the image that a company can build over time is crucial.

Creating an online presence that places your brand among the top search results is essential: you manage to capture the user’s attention through visual appeal.

I recommend using engaging images and providing information that helps users understand not only what we do but also what they can expect from our profile in the future. All these steps will allow you to excite, involve, and establish a connection with your audience.

The remarkable aspect of social networks is that they enable you to listen to your target audience, so you will always stay updated on what interests them the most, and this will help you provide more opportunities to promote your business online.

The final aspect I’d like to suggest is consumer loyalty based on a genuine trust bond that develops over time.

The Editorial Calendar

The editorial calendar is very useful for brand awareness and is based on organizing content on a weekly basis. Companies, working alongside social media managers, create and compile a fully organized calendar to implement and follow the strategy devised by the team.

Remember when we talked about audience loyalty? While browsing various social platforms online, you surely have paid attention to pages you particularly follow and noticed the variety and alternation of content (photos, audio, and video) published daily and weekly.

Building and planning an excellent editorial calendar will allow you to monitor and follow your content more easily and provide users with the opportunity to follow you easily and regularly.


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Proper Use of SEO

SEO is one of the key elements for increasing Brand Awareness: it plays a primary role in providing search engines with signals to optimize and index your site’s content.

As an SEO expert, you need to provide the right videos, and content, and make your website’s homepage engaging for better search engine visibility.  

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Building an application

Another opportunity offered by the web is application planning. With the rise of mobile devices, thousands of applications have been designed, planned, and developed.

Speaking of which, let me share a small anecdote: a few months ago, a web agency reached out to me for help in creating and developing a Web Radio for a niche food chain spread. Initially, I received limited information.

What my client desired most was an original, fresh, and highly interactive project: an application that is easy to download, simple to understand, practical to use, and includes multilingual support.

This is particularly important as a preliminary study revealed that most clients are tourists, including to sample our specialties. I wanted to share this experience with you because it led me to various questions. I asked myself:

  • What motivates me to download one application over another?
  • What am I seeking in an application?
  • What value do I expect from one application compared to another?
  • How significant is the design of an application?

Often, I allowed myself to be drawn into the appropriate color scheme based on the content being discussed.

Later, reflecting on the proliferation of sharing applications in major cities, I considered the various discounts that, in some cases, give us an extra incentive to download them. Specifically, in the context of music, how could I impress my client?

Tools for measuring Brand Awareness

When I envision Brand Awareness, it’s like being in a theater, listening to each instrument in an orchestra tune-up before achieving the perfect symphony for the big audience.

Can you imagine that scene too? Well, each instrument symbolizes a specific element that will help you navigate and manage Brand Awareness effectively.

Are you curious about the tools that will help you reach your goal? Below are the main tools for measurement.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is like our piano: the primary tool that will assist you in maintaining your project. It’s a completely free service offered by the search engine to its users. It’s distinctive for its ability to monitor and track your website.

While it may seem complex initially, its tables and graphs elucidate your traffic trends.

Google Trends

Think of Google Trends as a guitar; its diverse characteristics alter the sound for your listener. With Google Trends, you can understand what the online world is searching for. You can intercept the most sought-after news during a specific period.

The keyword remains constant, but its frequency varies across different countries. This free tool allows you to gauge how often a term is used and identify geographic preferences.

Imagine Google Ads as a saxophone; in the digital age, this advertising platform is widely used. It encompasses positioning tools, and SEO/SEM, and is continuously employed by businesses to promote their websites.

This tool enables you to place your link among the top search results, although not organically.

Brand Awareness: Successful Examples

Before we delve into discussing a few instances of successful brand awareness observed over the years, let me share some pivotal steps for brands:

  • Audience Familiarity: Grasping your target market is an essential prerequisite. It allows you to tailor your marketing campaign to your needs and more effectively resonate with your intended audience.
  • Knowledge of Your Uniqueness: It is also crucial to establish an identity. When I talk about identity, I’m not only referring to the visual creation of your brand, but to a series of aspects revolving around your work: the service you intend to provide, the product you want to sell, and the interest in establishing relationships with customers. Creating an identity within a niche means differentiating yourself in some aspects from your competitors.
  • Knowledge of Your Passion: The secret at the foundation of good work is undoubtedly the right passion; conveying it and being able to inspire is the proper means to bring an increasing number of users closer to your brand.
  • Knowledge of Your Channels: To promote your brand effectively, social channels represent a source of attraction for people. Certainly, having a high budget enables and facilitates the sponsorship of your campaign. Investing in specific industry magazines or advertisements allows you to appear nationally with greater ease.

Uber VS Lyft

The first case that caught my attention is the difference between Uber and Lyft.

Both were born in 2012, both offer a car-sharing service, both services originated in America, and in both cases, drivers of the two different services, after three hundred seconds from their arrival, if they haven’t yet received the customer, have the option to cancel the ride.

During registration, you will be asked for the details of your credit card or PayPal.

In both cases, we’re talking about two positive examples of Brand Awareness. So what are the differences between the two possible solutions that a user can turn to if they don’t want to use public transportation or call a taxi?

  1. The first difference is, indeed, related to payment: With Uber, at the end of the given ride, you can pay in cash and optionally choose to tip the driver. With Lyft, payment is exclusively through the previously saved credit card in the settings. Even the tip, if you decide to leave one, can be done via the card.
  2. Uber is linked to Google while Lyft is linked to Facebook.
  3. The type of passenger who uses one or the other service. On Uber, you’ll hardly find youngsters: there will be career men, sitting in the back seats, who in many cases, have no interest in initiating a conversation during their journey. Lyft’s goal, on the other hand, is to create genuine communication between citizens. With the help of Facebook, they try to accommodate citizens as much as possible by connecting them based on their circles of friends.

The Fiat Case in America

I imagine you’re familiar with Fiat: each of us has had the chance to get into a Fiat at least once. Universally recognized as a car maker, over the years, it had to revise its Brand Awareness to position itself in the American market.

Although initially a challenging task, given the various competitors we’re used to seeing zooming on American roads, the company realized that the winning idea could be achieved by making a digital presence and creating the right Ads campaigns.

Among the different keywords, the company decided to use to be found by users, “Small car” caught my attention. New drivers who, due to engine and displacement restrictions, couldn’t drive family cars initially, looked for city cars.

In no time, their searches increased traffic on the Fiat group’s social channels. The brand visibility, which became very high in a short period, changed the perception that the end user had until then.

La Fascino PGT S.r.l.

I have chosen an established television production to tell you another example of Brand Awareness. Perhaps you might not have immediately understood what I’m talking about, but if I were to introduce the name, Maria De Filippi, your perception could change rapidly.

The Lombard presenter, in recent years, has hosted some of the most important programs on television, which have given her the opportunity to reach a wide audience and achieve great notoriety.

Hers can be defined as a success story because she had the winning idea of opening her own production company: Fascino, in collaboration with Mediaset.

In this way, she not only managed to leave her mark on the programs but also create and produce them, making them the flagship programs of the network.

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Brand Awareness is crucial because the consumer, at any stage of communication and marketing, will always play a fundamental role in strengthening the brand. In order to create, maintain, and expand their network, companies must understand the importance of growing by retaining their customers.

Knowing a certain brand is a key element in determining the market presence of a particular company. If you need suggestions to develop your Brand Awareness, Digital Coach can help you. Contact us, and we will assist you in your digital project with our strategic coaching.

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