Brand awareness is a crucial element of long-term business success. For starters, companies that invest in brand awareness can see a boost in sales. In a study by OnBuy.com, 71% of shoppers said it was important that they recognize a brand before making a purchase. Additionally, companies that lack brand awareness risk getting buried by their competitors. This is especially true for small businesses and startups.
The good news is that brand awareness is not necessarily difficult to achieve. In this article, we’ll cover several strategies to increase your overall brand awareness online.
Why online brand awareness is important
Brand awareness is vital because it is a direct relationship with your current and potential customers. Increased brand awareness means your brand is more familiar to your consumers, and it can raise consumer trust. Since customers are more likely to spend money with organizations they know and trust, this can result in higher sales.
Brand awareness can also create association. For example, Band-Aid, Q-Tip and Kleenex have all built up such strong brands that people commonly refer to their brand names instead of their respective objects (bandage, cotton swab and tissue). Although this level of brand awareness can be difficult to achieve, you want your consumers to think of your brand first when they need your product or service. This will keep them coming to you instead of your competitors.
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How to increase brand awareness online
Here are eight ways to increase your brand awareness online. For best results, use a combination of these strategies.
1. Create a unique and recognizable logo.
Your brand is first recognized by its logo. Without a strong logo that speaks to what your business stands for, your customers will not fully engage with your business. When you think about some of the most successful companies in the world – such as Amazon, Google or Facebook – the first thing that probably comes to mind is the logo. A logo is a powerful marketing and branding tool that distinguishes your brand from the competition.
We’ve seen too many cluttered and unclear logos. Your logo should have a clear message and relate to your customers. Keep the logo simple and clean. Choose one or two colors that represent your brand. The most successful logos are often the simplest. A logo is not your brand, but it is the most visible component of it.
2. Build a user-friendly website.
Your website needs to be visually appealing and easy to navigate. If you don’t have important information that engages your viewers on your homepage, they won’t stick around for long. In fact, according to WebFX, 38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the layout is unattractive.
Web users have little time to take in all the information on your site. Lists and bold headings that summarize your information can quickly get your point across to your viewers. Strategic placement of offers, pictures, and product details that are easy to read and understand quickly can also keep your viewers on your site and sell the value of your business.
FYI: According to digital marketing company WebFX, 74% of users are more likely to return to your site if it’s mobile-friendly. Keep this in mind when designing your website.
3. Write a blog.
A blog can do wonders for brand awareness. Your blog can stand alone or go on your website if you have one. If you are meticulous about the quality and type of content you produce, you stand to gain repeat readers. Provide value to your readers by creating meaningful blog content that is informative or entertaining. It’s also important to post consistently; a stagnant or outdated blog may look worse for your brand than no blog at all.
4. Stay active on social media.
If you aren’t using social media for your business, you’re missing out on a big opportunity to increase awareness of your brand. Social media gives you direct access to your customers and allows you to engage them in meaningful dialogue.
Increasing your activity on your social media accounts means more engagement with your customer base. According to Statista, there are nearly 3 billion active users on Facebook, 2.3 billion on YouTube, 1.4 billion on Instagram and 1 billion on TikTok. If your business isn’t on at least one of these platforms, you’re missing out on customers on a global scale. Each social media platform appeals to a different demographic, so you’ll want to figure out which ones work best for your business.
Post regularly and engage in conversations with your audience. Make sure your social media brand voice is cohesive across all channels. Once you’ve begun scaling your social media activity, invest in social media marketing to get your brand in front of your target audience.
Did you know? Staying active on social media can help you engage your target audience and improve customer retention.
5. Enlist influencers to market your brand.
Influencer marketing has exploded in popularity, and for good reason: It works. In a survey by Mediakix, nearly 90% of marketers said the influencer marketing return on investment is comparable to or better than other marketing channels they’ve used.
If it’s appropriate for your brand, consider partnering with social media influencers who can promote your brand on their channels. Of course, you should only partner with influencers who align with your brand image and share your target audience. Encourage them to be creative and authentic in how they promote your brand so their followers are more likely to support you.
6. Use a variety of media, like video and podcasts.
A solid presence on various media and platforms can increase your brand visibility. Consider creating visual content, especially video branding. Whether you post long-form tutorial videos or 30-second clips, find a video flow that works for you and your audience, and post regularly.
Another avenue is podcasting, which has become a popular medium. Although it isn’t difficult to start, creating a successful podcast takes time and effort. Choose a topic and episode format that will resonate with your audience. You might also consider interviewing relevant or high-profile guests on your podcast to attract a larger following. [Read related article: Better Than Coffee: 10 Podcasts That Will Inspire Your Mornings]
7. Invest in online reputation management.
Online reputation management is exactly what it sounds like. Every established brand has an online reputation, and customers can have a negative impact on that reputation. We’ve all seen posts from disgruntled customers complaining about companies or services. Taking the time to understand how reviews work – and how to respond to online reviews – can help you control how your business and brand are seen online.
Investing in a reputation management system can help you stay on top of the way your brand is seen online. If there are negative reviews or misinformation about your business, you can quickly address the problem and strengthen your reputation.
Tip: One of the best ways to fix your online reputation is by actively engaging with your customers on social media, especially if they leave negative reviews and comments. Publicly reaching out to them to rectify an issue not only fixes the problem for that individual customer, but also builds awareness of your brand.
8. Boost all content through search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO is a strategy to increase the ranking of your website on major search engines. Being on the first page of Google dramatically increases your click-through rate, with the top spot on a Google search page taking 28.5% of all clicks, according to research by Sistrix. By the time you’ve reached the 10th position, the average click-through rate drops all the way down to 2.5%. Creating optimized, high-quality content that fosters engagement on your site is the simplest way to increase your search engine ranking, which means more visitors to your site.
Skye Schooley contributed to the writing and research in this article.