By Sweta Patel
Face it, starting a business is tough and without any resources it’s tougher. Many entrepreneurs struggle because they feel as though they are on their own. In most cases they are on their own. Unfortunately, no one needs the entrepreneur, but he or she needs everyone. The entrepreneur needs to attract capital, a believable team and customers. It is almost like turning water into wine. The only resources you have are your vision and your power to communicate. The challenge: can you get your brand out there?
Know Where You Stand
The first step with branding is to know where you stand. For example, my company Global Marketing Tactics is a marketing strategy brand. We create marketing strategies for consumers. If this were to change to something else then our brand would not be consistent.
There will be some people who love your brand and others will not, but that does not mean you should switch your stance to please them. The other important items include accessibility and simplicity. A great brand example is In-N-Out Burger because it is simple and easy! A strong and different position creates visibility for your potential buyers.
Once the brand is consistent, then it is time for a brand lift. What does this mean? A brand lift increases the interaction between the brand and its target audience primarily through marketing and advertising campaigns. Here are what must be measured after a campaign:
- Consumer attitude (Opinion on quality; did they like it?)
- Recall (Do the consumers remember it?)
- Awareness (How far did the campaign reach?)
- Intent (Are they going to buy?)
- Favorability (Will they recommend it to others?)
Best Practice: Answer these questions: what problem does your brand solve in the market and how does it do it differently compared to everyone else? In addition, how can the top companies in your field put you out of business? How can you prevent this from happening?
You’ve Got the Tools, Now Make the Moves
Most brands forget about primary market research and go straight to trial and error to figure out who they “think” their target audience is. So, before you do anything else, do the primary market research. This includes one-on-one interviews, focus groups and surveys.
Best Practice: Use Google Consumer Surveys to embed questions that online users will have to answer in order to access more content. Google allows you to quickly create surveys based on your content and needs. You can even select your own target audience or use a sample target audience. The best part is that you receive answers within 24 hours!
After the surveys are done and the target audience is determined, then it is time to keep track of the qualitative metrics:
- Thought leader among competitors — Use Compete and receive reports on specific keywords to figure this out.
- Destination site — Is your brand top-of-mind when your customers are searching for a product? We use Google Trends to measure certain keywords that are related to our products and services. If they are not on the first page then we’re sorry to say, “but nobody cares.”
- Attracting customers — Do people love your brand or are you forcing them to follow you? Nothing should be forced.
- Focus on repeat visitors — This may require creating multiple landing pages and using Google Analytics URL builder tool to measure the effectiveness of the marketing campaign.
Know How To Measure
Here is a short list of excellent tools for measuring your success:
Cyfe — We use this tool to measure everything in terms of sales, ROI, social analytics, and even our target audience.
Brandwatch — Want to know what is being said about you online? This tool gives our clients a full summary on what is being said about them online. My favorite part is when it defines the keywords to track (brands, people’s names, and products.)
Netvibes — This tool tracks customers, clients, and your reputation across the web and then it analyzes them using a third-party tool. The best part of this tool is that it is free.
Social Mention — This is a free tool which allows you to measure “brand sentiment” and what others are saying about your business or branding using certain keywords.
Sysomos — This tool collects relevant conversations online and provides metrics and graphics. The best part of this tool is that everything is in real time.
Best Practice: Use the free tools at first such as Netvibes and Social Mention until you are able to grow your brand. These tools will give you sufficient information to proceed with the other parts of your marketing campaign.
What was your top takeaway from this column? Please comment below!
Sweta Patel is a San Diego-based marketing entrepreneur whose company is Global Marketing Tactics.
>> Subscribe to Times of San Diego’s free daily email newsletter! Click hereFollow Us: