Brand Awareness

Using surveys to gauge brand awareness

For businesses new and old, it is important to make people aware of your brand and what your organisation does. Most brands will use a combination of marketing efforts to increase their brand awareness, but it’s important to make sure any hard work is paying off. One of the best ways to do this is to send out a survey to your ideal target audience or to the general public to measure awareness, and perception of, the brand.

How to do it

Using research to monitor brand awareness is an example of traditional market research, which is extremely useful, but can often be expensive and take longer than you would like it to. With CitizenMe, you can get results in minutes, meaning that you can identify what isn’t working (and make changes) sooner rather than later – ultimate win. For the best results, choose a larger sample for more reliable data. Speaking to around 500 people is always best, but if you can, stretch that number to 1000 to get more accurate data.  

What will your questionnaire look like?

Let’s pretend you’re in the marketing team of an airline company. How would you use a brand awareness survey? You might want to look at different marketing methods for frequent and infrequent flyers to raise your brand’s profile. First you should probably think about your customers’, or future customers’, flying habits.

You could start with frequency:

When was the last time you flew?
One week ago Within the last month 1-3 months ago
3-6 months ago 6-9 months ago 9-12 months ago
More than a year ago More than two years ago Never
How many times, on average, do you fly per year?
In this instance, consider return flights as opposed to individual trips
Once Twice 2-6
Once per quarter Once a month Once a week

So now you know how often your customers fly and the last time they flew. This will be useful for making comparisons when you have all of your responses. But, the question is, do they know your airline? Now’s the time to find out.

Gauging the competition

Thinking about flying, which five airlines are the first to come to mind?
[open text question]

The next logical follow up to this would be:

Which of the following airlines have you heard of?
My Airline Delta KLM British Airways Lufthansa Emirates

There are hundreds of airlines you could list here, but in order to accurately compare how aware people are of your brand against the competition, it would be best to list your closest competitors, and try not to have a list of more than 10-12.

Your competitors might be one step ahead of you, and you might see this as a negative thing, but what it actually represents is an opportunity. If you know one of your rivals is winning, you can take a look at what they’re doing which puts them on top, and take steps to compete and be the champ of your category.

How did you hear about us? Tell us everything!

If you’ve been going heavy on the marketing lately and want to see if that expenditure has paid off, you should ask:

When did you first hear of our airline?
Within the last month Within the past three months 3-6 months ago 6-12 months ago More than a year ago

If most people say that they have heard of you within the period your recent marketing efforts went live, it shows they might have paid off. On the other hand, you might find that people first heard of your brand at a different time, maybe when you had previous campaign running. Regardless of the outcome, the responses to this question will help you to pinpoint what works and what doesn’t.

So, now you know how long people have known about your airline, but that begs the question, where did they hear about you?

Where have you seen or heard of our airline?
Print advert Online advert Blog post/news article On a display in an airport
On social media In a travel agency On an aggregate site On TV

This will give you an idea of what kind of marketing efforts are working. For an airline, promotional materials will obviously be displayed in airports and locations specific to the travel industry. But for different sectors, there will be different locations where you marketing efforts will be more effective.  

With a brand awareness survey, not only can you see who has heard of you, but you can also gauge whether or not you are likely to get repeat customers.

Have you used our airline before?
Yes No

If many respondents have previously used your airline, you might decide to implement a customer satisfaction campaign, such as NPS.

Do you think we’re cool?

By this point, there is a lot of information you will have been able to glean. But what is important is that your brand resonates with your audience and appeals to their needs.

How appealing is our airline?
Very appealing Quite appealing Neither appealing nor unappealing Quite unappealing Very unappealing

By the time your respondents have answered all these questions you will have a clearer understanding of where your brand sits in its industry. If you brand isn’t as well known as you might have thought, you have a challenge ahead to get the name out into the world.

How often should you do a brand awareness survey?

This can completely depend on your organisation’s size and budget. Ideally you should do a brand awareness survey at least once or twice a year. From this you will be able to see (accurately) how awareness has changed over time and plan your forthcoming campaigns.

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