Quick guide to DIY brand tracker metrics
Thinking of starting your own brand tracker?
Brand trackers are a vitally important tool for brands at all stages of growth. They provide businesses with an overview of key perception metrics, which if tracked on a regular basis, can help marketing departments to identify the impact of their activity on the wider market.
In this blog post we will present some of the standard metrics that we include in our own brand tracker surveys. We will also discuss a little bit more about why each particular metric is important and how to better understand them
What should I track in my brand tracker?
Broadly speaking there are two ways to measure awareness, unaided and aided:
- Unaided awareness is where you ask respondents to name any brand they can think of in your category.
- Aided awareness is where you show respondents a list and ask them which they are aware of.
Unaided awareness is an effective way of establishing brand cut-through in its category, and perhaps the most true measure of brand awareness. Aided awareness is most effect when measured against other brands - if more people are likely to remember your brand compared to others when prompted, then you have a good indication that people have been paying attention to the brand.
Favorability is a key metric as it shows the level of brand preference in a category. Likability is a useful alternative, however to get a proxy for customer choice, favourability is a more useful metric.
One of the most effective ways to measure purchase behaviour in a tracker survey, is to establish consideration of future purchase intention of brand. With brand tracker studies it is important to remember that it is easier for people to remember their opinions compared to remembering their behaviours. On this basis it's most effective to establish the attitudes towards purchase as a proxy for understanding the impact of the brand on spend.
Establishing recommendation is a vital part to understand how your activity has contributed towards brand advocacy. Recommendation can be measured in a number of ways, of course one of the most standard ways to establish recommendation is to use Net Promoter Score (NPS). The benefit of measuring recommendation using NPS is it you can compare against competitor benchmarks in the benchmarks of your own category.
Brand attributes are statements about the brand that describe its unique identity. Brand attributes are important in brand tracking surveys because they allow marketers to understand how unique the brand proposition is, in its category. If research shows that a brand does not perform well on its own attributes against it's competitors it would indicate that it does not have a unique position in the market. Often brand attribute statements are pulled directly from the brand guidelines document.
Brand Linkage or Message Association is a really important metric to include in a tracker study. This involves measuring the levels of agreement of consumers to your key brand message for example Nike - Just do it. Brand linkage is an important metric as it establishes how sticky the brands identity is.
Another way to understand how well a brand perform in its category is to assess levels of agreement towards the drivers of consumer choice within the category itself. This is important to understand whether or not the brand offers a credible choice for customers. Understanding the drivers of the category can often be obtained using secondary data sources or through qualitative research which would need to be conducted prior to launching the tracking study.
How do I know whether it's been a good performance?
Often we get clients asking us whether low or high levels of agreement to a particular metric are a good or bad thing. The truth is that performance needs to be considered within the context of the brand category and the culture within which it is being measured. Brand tracker studies really come to life when you are able to understand how your brand performs compared to your competitors. That’s why our Rare: tracker studies offer the measurement against your competitors as a standard.
The metrics presented above are just a handful of some of the key dimensions to include in a tracking study. Overtime these are some of the most important aspects to understand in order to identify your own brand health.
In order for a brand tracker to be successful, the research needs to be disseminated to a sample that is representative of the population periodically. It is also important to ensure that the sample is reflective of your target audience and out with each wave of the brand tracking research uses the same population profile to ensure that the research is fair accurate.
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