“If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” Peter Drucker never spoke truer words.
Once you develop your brand, you have to then plan for managing its performance. Prepare for your brand story to evolve. Your customers are going to change their minds about how they buy things. And the only way to know if your brand is still on point with these shifts is by measuring its performance data ongoing. And today, we’ll introduce you to nine kick-ass brand metrics to consider.
To really tell if you’ve done a good job developing a brand in line with your WHY and executing a solid brand strategy, you can look at the numbers. But we’re talking about more than just how many “likes” your business page got this week or how many Google My Business pings you logged. You can’t just rely on your sales revenue, either. To measure a brand, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with a few new metrics.
But instead of having your eyes gloss over with reports, trends and numbers that don’t really mean anything to you right now, let’s make some broad-stroked term introductions. THIS is the absolute list worth printing. These are the kick-ass brand metrics that you can easily understand and provide the most insights about your brand’s performance over time.
Melissa’s Boutique: Melissa is charging full speed ahead with her online boutique sales, pop-up home sales fashion shows and securing booths at various traveling community events. And while she’s cashing in and keeping busy, she’s wondering how well her brand is resonating with her niche audience of moms needing styles. She’s not sure where to look, and she knows she can’t just rely on what her friends are telling her. How can she pulse-check her brand strategy and make sure she’s on the right path?
Why Brand Metrics Are Important for Your Business
If the pandemic taught business owners anything, it’s that being flexible and adaptable is key to longevity. Industries change all the time. Just look at how much the restaurant and food markets shifted to adopt contactless free delivery and pick-up options when in-store dining was shuttered. Customers change, too. Imagine life without the convenience of Amazon Prime or Hello Fresh.
The brand foundation you build, rooted in your WHY and vision, will sustain storytelling and messaging shifts along the way. But not keeping an eye on your metrics will mean you miss those pivotable opportunities. Savvy business leaders know that branding isn’t a one-and-done game. It requires flexibility and constant adapting to new dynamics. And you can’t change what you don’t know.
Brand Metrics Definitions Every Business Owner Should Know
So, what yardstick should you use to keep a finger on the pulse of your brand performance? Here’s a roster of the best metrics. You may not necessarily need to use all of them. But not using any of them will result in certain brand engagement failures.
Net Promoter Score (NPS) – This is a score that represents how likely people are to recommend your company to others. Of all your engagements, subtract the percentage of those who detract from those who promote your brand.
Example: If 10% of your respondents never buy from you, 20% are still on the fence, and 70% recommend you, your NPS calculation would be 70 – 10 = 60.
Any NPS score over zero means your audience is more loyal to your brand than not. Some say the best scores are any over 50, with an 80+ NPS being outstanding.
Purchase Intent – When you evaluate Purchase Intent, you’re really looking at how likely people are to buy from you in the future. Sometimes called “buyer intent,” this is a metric that represents a set of variables including demographics, engagement, past purchase history, firmographics and market message interactions.
Brand Recall: This is your brand’s ability to be top-of-mind with customers without prompting. In other words, without thinking about it, how well does your audience recognize your brand? The best way to calculate Brand Recall is with the use of consumer surveys and polls. You can then divide the number of correctly identified brand respondents by the total number surveyed. Multiply this score by 100 to achieve your Brand Recall percentage.
Brand Uplift: This measurement will tell you just how much value your brand is actually adding to your company. This metric requires the use of brand lift studies or surveys and a lot of A/B testing. It will also require analyzing the organic search traffic and your consumer feedback metrics. Ultimately, if you see increases in these, when compared to the whole group, you can estimate your Brand Lift percentages. Any increases indicate your brand continues to support and add value to your company.
Brand Sentiment: This is an easier metric to implement ongoing. It measures any positive or negative connotation your brand may have with your audience. Check it often since customer reviews and service experiences may shift regularly. Surveys and polling are ideal for these types of metrics.
Brand Market Share: This metric determines your place within your industry. Remember, though; you’re not in business to “beat the other guys.” You’re only interested in finding ways to improve your brand and grow your own trajectory. Here are three strategic positions you might occupy at any point on your journey:
- Offensive – This is an openly competitive strategy that a company implements to take market share directly away from the competition, much like Uber and Lyft battle for drive service customers.
- Defensive – This strategic positioning refers to a set of brand tactics that a leading business might adopt to protect its market share from a specific competitor. Coca-Cola and Pepsi continue to battle for the number one brand spot in the soft drink market, for example.
- Flanker/Fighter – A Flanker/Fighter brand approach is a strategy used by an existing brand that introduces something new or revolutionary. It’s how Amazon went from being an online book service to an international powerhouse of all things ordered online practically overnight.
Total Brand Equity: Brand Equity is the measurement of how well-liked your brand is. It usually applies to top-performing brands like Apple or Nike, when brand equity represents a substantial dollar value. But any business can track its growing brand equity. Take the price difference between your brand and a generic service or product within your space. Multiply that by your total sales volume to see how much equity your brand has.
Brand Strength: This is a big one. To measure how well your brand story is holding up to an ever-changing market, add your Purchase Intent score to your NPS score and multiply by 100. This sliding scale metric is like an overall scorecard of your brand’s ability to emotionally connect, perform financially and sustain in your current market conditions.
Employee Sentiments: Don’t overlook one of the most important brand metrics of all, your employees. Remember, your brand represents an overarching experience. Your teams can provide valuable insights about how they feel about your brand positioning. It’s also a good reminder that brand experiences can be inside your company as well as outside, direct and indirect.
Again, you won’t have to implement all of these metrics all the time. But ignoring your brand’s performance and relevancy will lead to major setbacks for your business. A great place to start is in developing a strategy for surveys and polling. A software like Qwary can help you do just that. We also use this software to help gauge brand performance for our company.
How Often Should You Be Reviewing Brand Metrics?
Now that you know what to measure and have an idea of what tools are best for the job, just how often should you be pulse-checking your brand?
Doug’s Dentistry: Doug is feeling pretty confident about his brand authenticity. For now, it seems to be on-point and working well since he’s seeing more patients within his core audience. The word’s getting out about his gentle approach for those with anxiety about the dentist chair. And Doug puts off looking at his brand metrics for a few weeks. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? Wrong.
We generally suggest businesses review their brand metrics at the absolute very least, once per month. We know business gets hectic. But any frequency less than monthly can result in missing necessary shifts or important data that is needed to pivot. Most business owners check their branding metrics weekly or bi-weekly. Significant shifts in an NPS score or Brand Strength can tell you a lot. By not catching those market shifts early, you have less of a chance to adapt when needed to stay ahead. Get comfortable checking on your brand strategy and make sure it continues to support your VISION with every change you make.
If you still need help establishing or understanding your brand metrics, let Awareness Branding & Consulting be your guide. We can make sense of your brand’s strengths and weaknesses and help you create your brand metric process. Get your FREE consultation scheduled with our team today!