The 21st century has become the era of brands. Amazon was worth $150.8 billion in 2018. Google was worth $120.9 billion.
It’s not hard to want a piece of that pie. But is it possible to reach the same levels of brand recognition as names like Samsung and Apple?
That depends on your industry. But even if you don’t reach the heady heights of Facebook, you can still increase brand awareness.
It all comes down to your online presence. And a dusting of digital marketing savvy.
So if you’re keen to improve your brand awareness strategy using your online presence? Read on to learn more.
What Is an Online Presence?
Your online presence is your 24/7 persona. It’s not quite your salesperson (that’s what your website sales pages are for).
Think of your online presence as a Venn diagram. On one side is you, and on the other side is your customer. Between them lies the space where you interact.
It can be difficult to pin down an online presence. Different factors make it up, spread across the internet.
Your presence includes your social media platforms and your adverts. It also involves the content you create.
It reaches more places than you could access on your own at any one time. So building an online presence is a great way to find leads or customers.
Traditional businesses would advertise and wait for customers to come to them. But by going to the places where customers are, your online presence can meet them in their own space.
Focus on building relationships with your followers. Answer questions, share useful content, and provide value.
What Is a Brand Awareness Strategy?
Brand awareness refers to how easily an audience recognizes your brand. It’s difficult to measure using traditional metrics.
Even good sales figures don’t guarantee high brand awareness. Try using ‘social listening’ to gauge how people perceive your brand.
Check related hashtags to see how many people mention you or your brand. Even checking reviews on websites like Amazon can help. People may recommend you in reviews for other brands.
Good brand awareness helps build trust between customers and brands. Think of the times when you Google a problem. Or Photoshop a photo.
These brands achieved such high brand awareness that their names became verbs.
Note, there’s a slight disconnect between an online presence and your brand. You create your online presence and have control over where and how you show up.
But your customers create your brand. It emerges from how they perceive you. This begs the question…
How Do You Combine the Two to Increase Brand Recognition?
Having an active online presence helps to generate brand awareness. This works simply by making sure your target audience regularly sees your brand.
But by having the right interactions, you also help guide what your audience is aware of in your brand.
Let’s look at four ways to create a brand awareness strategy using your online presence.
Get on Social Media
Put a focus on building your online presence. You need to be strategic here. There’s no point in building a presence on Twitter if your customers are on Instagram.
Being active on the right platforms builds brand awareness with the right customers.
Set goals so you can measure if your efforts are working. Check your progress on a monthly basis.
If you’re spending hours on Twitter but you’re not getting any leads? Dial it back and re-focus elsewhere.
Put Your Website at the Center
Building a presence on social media is non-negotiable in modern digital marketing. But you’re limited in how you present yourself visually. You’re tied into the colors and fonts that were chosen for you by the platform.
Drive traffic from your social media to your website. This ties your online presence into a brand awareness strategy.
Visitors can get the full brand experience on your website. It’s also a space that you control. That’s better than the social media platforms where you simply rent space.
Check out these sites for the types of websites you can create.
Make sure your website is mobile-friendly. Google rolled out its mobile-first index in 2018. They focus on results from mobile-responsive websites.
Decide on Your Content
Work out what you’re going to put online. Is it a podcast or a YouTube channel? Social media posts? An online community?
Decide on the content first. This becomes a cornerstone of your online presence. It’s why customers seek you out in the first place.
But it also generates brand awareness through being helpful or valuable. Make sure the content is useful and what your customers want.
Putting out this content raises your profile and helps establish you as an authority. This is the intersection between your online presence and brand recognition.
Check out this guide to gaining exposure if you run a blog.
Improve Your Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) helps search engines to find your content. This helps visitors find your website, which boosts your online presence.
But it also helps to increase brand awareness. Customers associate your website with their search queries.
Say you’re a wedding planner. If a user is looking for a wedding planner and your website pops up in the search results? Instant association.
Combine this with your efforts on social media for an extra boost. If a user sees you on Instagram every day and you’re in the top 4 Google results?
They’re more likely to trust your brand. You’re more familiar with them than your competition. That increases their recognition of your brand.
Boost Your Online Visibility
Your online presence is what you put out. Your brand recognition is how people see you. To build brand awareness, you need to combine the two.
Working on your online presence has two benefits for your company. First, it gives you more opportunities for customers to discover what you do.
Second, it’s a crucial part of your brand awareness strategy. A positive online presence creates a good set of associations for potential customers.
Looking to refresh the visual side of your brand? Why not check out these graphic design trends for 2019?