The way you think about your brand tracker can make or break its usefulness. Your brand tracker is really your brand guidance system which helps support your strategy in the long term and allows you to fine-tune marketing activity on an ongoing basis.

In addition to keeping a pulse on key brand and category indicators for both your brand(s) as well as that of your competitors (awareness, consideration, imagery, etc), think about capturing the following dimensions as well to get the most out of your brand tracker.

Need some help getting your brand tracker dialed in? Let our research services team help you. 

Prospective vs retrospective tracking

Most brand trackers we see are still asking about the “last time you x”. In today’s marketplace with disruption in every industry and category, as well as a move to more efficient and effective advertising practices, your next industry leader can emerge quicker than you think. Therefore it’s more important than ever to have a pulse on what might be on the horizon.

Our recommendation: Probe for current/future plans and perspective instead of past experiences. This little shift in question structure can have a huge impact on the usefulness of your results.

Segmenting of consumers

Being able to slice your data by segment will help you determine if your strategy is working for the key target that you are trying to reach and who would be most likely to engage with your brand over the long term. So too many researchers do a general sample (analysis and interpretation of raw scores) without factoring in the contexts most relevant to them (e.g. target segment). This can dilute analysis and lead to misleading results that lack sensitivity to marketing activities.

Adding this layer and making sure that you have a minimum base size of representation for your key target segments can help you optimize your marketing and your messaging.

Media consumption

Where is your target market spending their time? How can you capitalize on that with your media strategy? This metric has never shifted more than in the last few years so it’s important to keep a beat on consumption habits for your target, and yet so many brand trackers don’t ask about this important detail. This leads strategies that look at historical performance more than current consumer behavior to inform their media strategies which can lead to poor results.

Consumer needs and attitudes

Shifts in most categories are happening more frequently and quickly than ever. It’s important to follow consumer needs and attitudes towards products and services especially in industries that are ripe for disruption.

Catch market changes before it’s too late. Listen to the few respondents that are early adopters or thought leaders in their communities when they bring up new products and services. Leverage that channel for competitive intelligence.

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