Build Brand Awareness the Right Way With These Tips

Getting noticed is essential for any business to meet and achieve its goals, yours included. But how can you build brand awareness effectively? That’s a tricky question. Keep reading to learn a few helpful ways for your company to build brand awareness the right way

build brand awarenessBuild brand awareness to increase revenue

As you can see in the nifty AI-generated image above, awareness begins the conversion process, which, in my version, is a series of concentric circles rather than a pyramid. This reflects the cyclical nature of the conversion process. Regardless of which version you find more compelling, the import of awareness remains unchanged. Unless consumers are aware of a brand’s existence, there’s no hope of selling it to them. Hence, the first goal of any business is to increase awareness. So, let’s look at the tools you have available to build brand awareness.

Use online sources

Regardless of whether you operate an online business or one based in the physical world, the importance of a strong online presence is undeniable. Sure, only about 16% of sales occur online (and this is growing by about 10% a year), according to the US Census Bureau, but 66% of all shopping begins online. That includes 61% of shopping that eventually occurs in a physical store [source]. So, we’ll start with how you can build brand awareness online.

SEO or search engine optimization

SEO actually involves a series of tactics designed to help your content rank better in search engine results. We’ll focus on the Google search algorithm as 90+% of all searches occur on this search engine and other search engine algorithms are slightly different.

Why SEO matters

As I mentioned earlier, most purchases start online, even if they finish in a physical store. If your brand pages don’t show on the first page of search results, you’ll get almost no traffic to your website and may not build brand awareness effectively. As you can see below, your rank greatly impacts the traffic sent to your website. Even a physical store needs to rank well as customers plan their shopping on your website, use it to gauge your credibility and quality, and find information about your location and hours of operation.

organic traffic
Image courtesy of Backlinko

As an e-commerce store, this type of traffic also delivers among the highest conversion rates of available traffic sources, so SEO isn’t something you can ignore.

How to improve SEO

Improving SEO to build brand awareness doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a sustained effort over time (six months minimum) to see a significant change in your ability to rank content well in search engines. But that doesn’t mean you should ignore SEO as too hard or too costly. Every positive action you take contributes to improving the rank of your pages.

So, let’s talk SEO. To help, I created this short visual with steps you can take to improve your search performance.

the power of SEO

Start with a well-designed website hosted by a good provider. This provides a good user experience with a fast load speed and nearly 100% uptime. Site builders like Wix and Squarespace just don’t stack up against self-hosted websites on good platforms like Siteground. Choose your hosting company wisely, as moving from a site builder to self-hosting may mean starting from scratch. Plus, site builder sites often look unprofessional and require a lot of work to make them look unique and present your brand in a positive light. They’re much harder to work with than their ads suggest. You’re better off choosing self-hosting and using tools like Elementor to bring the drag-and-drop functionality that site builders provide.

A good theme is the foundation of your website. When you choose a good theme, you can create a website without writing a single line of code. By choosing a mobile-friendly theme, you also create a good mobile experience. A good theme also supports branding by offering a variety of colors and places to embed images so your brand stylesheet is easy to implement.

Keywords used to create content should match user intent as reflected by their query. As more users employ voice search via Alexa and similar devices, queries are getting longer, so you need longer keywords. Google offers a Keyword Planner as part of its advertising platform. It’s free to use the planner but you must create an account first. Other companies offer similar planning tools you might consider, although many charge a small fee. You can also monitor trending topics on social media platforms for ideas on the right keywords. You should only use a keyword once in creating content so, over time, you may need longer keywords.

long-tail keywords
Image courtesy of Yoast

Consistent content is the key to improving your SEO. If you want to rank well, you should post at least one piece of new content per week. Content should include a few images, your keywords strategically placed, more than 900 words (2000 is optimal to rank well), be well written, and provide value to readers. Recognize that creating content isn’t like writing a book, so don’t be afraid to cover the same topic more than once, although you should try to hit different angles with each post. Duplicate content is a decided no-no. I find ChatGPT is valuable in helping meet the content needs for ranking by providing a first draft and helping me think more broadly about my topic.

Monitoring your performance provides insights to help you improve your performance.

Harness the power of social media

Social media is everywhere, and everyone is on it. You can and should use that to your advantage. Make a strategic move with Facebook ads for franchises to promote your business the right way.

There are far too many social media platforms for any one company to have a presence on them all. You should pick the most popular ones that are used by your target demographic to start. Tailor your messages and content on each one to align with that specific platform’s users. For example, Facebook may skew older in terms of age, while TikTok is trendier and generally used by a younger demographic. You should still have the same messages, simply with a different voice.

Build brand awareness the right way

Lead with credibility

Advertising is meant to grab consumers’ attention, but it isn’t the only way to build brand awareness. Word of mouth has a much stronger impact on your performance than advertising, as it’s seen as more objective. Influencer marketing, reviews, and social engagement are all ways to build brand awareness that don’t rely on advertising. And this strategy means you must build credibility for your brand by delivering high-quality products, acting ethically, and taking your place as a valued member of the community. Otherwise, you generate negative word of mouth that spreads five times faster than positive.

If you go with a splashy campaign that borders on excessive claims just to bring more attention to your company and its products, you run the risk of damaging your reputation and losing customers before they make a single purchase. Keeping your promises is an important tool for avoiding negative word of mouth. Instead, vet every claim and statement to ensure you put your company in the best light and lead with honesty and credibility. After all, it is always better to be remembered for being authentic instead of having your company in the limelight for 15 minutes of fame due to false claims.

Give back to the community

Acting as a responsible corporate citizen is important. We call this CSR for corporate social responsibility and it covers everything from ethical treatment of employees, protecting the environment, delivering the best quality product possible, and helping those in your community who need help. For instance, you might sponsor a local team, provide products at reduced cost to those in need, or run programs to provide meals to those in need. That being said, and to be perfectly honest, there is a reciprocal benefit—your company has the opportunity to gain visibility through its actions in the community.

When it comes to giving, you can be creative and do what fits with your company’s mission and within the confines of your time and financial constraints. When your team volunteers to serve the community, give them shirts and hats with your company logo. People will remember the kindness they witnessed and remember your company when they make their next purchase.

Watch this short video for insight on why it is important and helpful for businesses to give back to their respective communities.

Conclusion

Use these ideas to present your company’s products and mission in the best possible light. Create effective advertising campaigns and always lead with honesty that you can back up every time. Take time to give back to your community. It will help more than you can ever know.

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Hausman and Associates, the publisher of MKT Maven, is a full-service marketing agency operating at the intersection of marketing and digital media. Check out our full range of services.