The best strategies for increasing brand recognition center on approaching consumers as individuals. While many brands look to major influencers or vast marketing campaigns, these campaigns often fall flat because consumers don’t trust the words of those they don’t know personally. Driving recognition is much easier when brands connect with smaller micro-influencers, who may not be as well known, but garner a lot of clout in their social circles.
Brands must also consider ways they can stand out as consumers shop, whether it be online or in their local grocery aisle. Brand recognition is most valuable when it happens close to purchase, so anything brands can do to make their products more visible along the path to purchase is crucial.
How to Increase Brand Recognition
There are many ways that brands can increase brand recognition and drive sales. Here are three tips which offer proven results.
#1: Use Digital Events to Drive User-Generated Content
Brands can gain attention online by encouraging consumers to participate in promotions using their own content. For example, asking that consumers use a branded hashtag to share their own photos of a product or brand can drive product interest while minimizing effort.
The vast majority of consumers, 83%, trust recommendations from friends while only 4% trust recommendations from celebrities. Micro-influencers aren’t celebrities and don’t necessarily have large online followings, but they do have family and friends who trust their words and engage with their content. By getting them to participate in an online event with user-generated content, brands enjoy greater recognition which is strengthened by individuals that consumers trust.
This is one of the reasons many major brands, like Unilever, are reconsidering high-cost influencer relationships and instead, are focusing on consumers on a micro level. User-generated content is a great way to get consumers talking about a brand, which will also expose that brand to their friends and family.
#2: Encourage In-Store Interaction With Mobile Apps
In-store interaction is a strong way to build brand awareness as it gets consumers invested in a brand when they’re most likely to make a purchase. Mobile proximity marketing apps, like Shopkick, are great for delivering these in-store experiences.
Georgia-Pacific chose to contact Shopkick for this reason. The brand was rolling out a new offering, Dixie Ultra Deep Dish Plates, and needed to make consumers aware of the new product. Using Shopkick, the brand encouraged consumers to interact with the product in a unique way. Consumers were incentivized to seek out the participating item in-aisle and scan its UPC in exchange for rewards points. After scanning the product, consumers were shown a branded video about the product, designed to drive further interest and solidify the brand in their minds. Overall, more than 16 million impressions were delivered, and 50% of purchasers reported they weren’t planning to buy the product before viewing the branded content within the Shopkick app.
Mobile apps have a lot of impact when it comes to brand recognition as they’re used when consumers are in the mindset to make a purchase. Even if the consumer doesn’t purchase at the time, they’ll be more apt to remember the brand and possibly choose it the next time they’re looking for a product in its category.
#3: Optimize Listings for Emerging Mediums Like Voice and Image Search
A final way for brands to gain recognition among consumers is to take advantage of emerging mediums for product search. Two of the most popular are voice and image recognition-based search. Brands can easily stand out among these platforms as they are not yet fully saturated with marketing.
Such optimization will require brands to reconsider how they manage their online listings. While standard marketplace listings are heavily text focused, voice and image search make little use of keywords, except as very basic descriptors. Instead, much of the brand’s visibility is determined by the product’s reputation. Online reputation management will be critical for reaching the top of the ranks.
Focusing on the individual is the best option for increasing brand recognition.
For example, for a brand to make it among the listings on Amazon’s Alexa voice search, the product must be listed as “Amazon’s Choice.” While there is no set criteria brands can follow, most of the products listed have many positive reviews, high ratings, and a strong seller reputation. Brands need to cultivate these attributes by encouraging consumers to leave reviews of products and by continuously providing excellent customer service.
Focusing on the individual is the best option for increasing brand recognition. By connecting with users through digital events, providing in-store rewards via mobile, and optimizing listings for emerging mediums, brands stand out better. They have the visibility needed to keep products top-of-mind during the consumer’s shopping trip, which in turn increases sales.
Image courtesy of Gustavo Frazao