What are brand metrics?
Brand metrics are quantifiable variables that you measure to track your brand’s performance. Without them, you would have no idea of the impact your marketing strategy is having on your business and your brand health.
The importance of using metrics to track your brand equity
Brand metrics should be an integral part of your brand strategy. They’ll help you understand how your brand is performing for your customers, and against the competition. Continuous monitoring of metrics will show you when your brand is on track to achieve or exceed its goals, and will also flag up any ‘wobbles’ so you can jump in and take action.
Why are brand metrics important for business growth?
Brand metrics are worth the investment. Using a tool to collect data and develop insights means you can take data-led branding initiatives and action for better ROI.
With brand metrics, you can learn:
- What drives loyal customers, which helps to improve your customer lifetime value
- What actions will drive brand awareness, which will increase your market share
- What brand attributes matter to your target audience, leading to more effective branding strategy and improved customer satisfaction
Brand health – or how well a brand meets the promises it makes for its service or its products – is vital for encouraging business growth. Brand metrics tie directly into many business goals. From a financial perspective, how aware potential customers are of your brand, how your current customers experience brand recall and how consumers feel about your business can all impact your sales funnel and revenue.
For example, 47% of customers view 3 to 5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales representative. Better customer satisfaction – measured with brand health metrics like Net Promoter Score – can encourage greater spending, with customers who rate an experience 5/5 stars being more than twice as likely to buy again and 80% of satisfied consumers spending more than unsatisfied ones.
Brand metrics to consider tracking
There are many brand health metrics available to you, covering:
- Perceptual – what people think of your brand (their brand perception)
- Behavioral – how people interact with your brand
- Purchase – how people buy and use your brand
- Financial – the brand’s impact on the bottom line
All of these add value, but you can start with the basics. Here are the basic branding metrics to implement, before building others into your brand tracking software as you grow your brand:
How aware are your potential customers of your branding efforts? You can use survey questions to understand the general awareness of your brand, both from potential customers and your existing audience.
Survey questions that measure brand awareness should cover both your business and your competitor landscapes. Use aided and unaided questions to capture the respondent’s prior awareness of your brand and brand campaigns, as well as their reactions to questions that actively trigger their brand awareness and brand recall. Unaided questions are where the survey offers an open-ended question that doesn’t provide a choice of answers. Aided questions offer the respondent a few choices to pick from.
You might ask:
When did you first become aware of our brand?
In the past year, where have you seen or heard of our brand?
Brand attributes and brand associations
In this category, you’re exploring the thoughts, opinions and experiences customers associate with your brand, and the expectations they might have as a result. A survey can uncover your brand’s strengths in being associated with positive sentiments, and help uncover weaker areas.
Explore the possibilities with statement-type questions on a Likert scale (Strongly Agree to Strongly Disagree). You can cover basic feature-based opinions, such as:
This shirt is well-made.
This fabric is durable.
And also move into areas that link the brand and product with personal values, e.g.:
This is an ethical brand that I feel good about.
The style and cut would make me look sophisticated.
Quality is huge when it comes to brand perception and brand value. The markers of quality come from product or service attributes, and a respondent’s opinion tends to be formed from a variety of experiences and perceptions of these. Defining your metrics for this variable will be a journey of discovery, with a bit of in-survey detective work to establish the links between product features and quality perception. Some areas to start with include:
- how the experience measures up to its specifications or marketing
- appearance and finish
You might ask questions such as:
How would you describe our products to a friend or family member?
If you had to describe our brand in five words, which words would you choose?
Brand loyalty is make-or-break for any brand. When fed back continually into a brand loyalty program, the data will help you minimize poor experiences and optimize factors that promote loyalty. These might include:
- courtesy and customer care
- a perception of being treated fairly
- product satisfaction
- identification with the brand (where brand values match personal values)
The classic metric for measuring brand loyalty is Net Promoter Score (NPS).
Best used in combination with more nuanced measures, NPS is an excellent baseline to gauge loyalty by asking the simple question:
On a scale of 0-10, how likely are you to recommend [brand] to your family and friends?
This is an easily-achievable metric that tracks the number of consumers who prefer to buy your branded product over the same product from a competitor. Much like brand equity, brand preference helps to indicate the strength of your brand vs the rest of the market and generic options.
You can measure brand preference in a survey by providing a question with a list of tick boxes of other brands, and the statement:
How often do consumers purchase your brand’s product or service? This metric will tell you. In your survey, use tick boxes labeled with your brand and competing brands and ask respondents the question:
Please select which of the following brands you buy or use regularly.
How often customers purchase from your brand – and at what frequency – can help you predict future purchases and understand trends.
You can identify previous or existing customers’ behavior with the questions:
Have you purchased [product] from [our brand] before?
How often do you purchase products from [our brand]?
There are lots of these, but probably the most important ones are: value per visit, total web traffic, traffic sources, conversion rate, lead generation cost, bounce rate, average session duration, interactions per visit, top pages and exit pages. This operational data can help to pinpoint customer behavior and inform future brand activity timing and content.
You can also go beyond analytics with website feedback surveys. This can illustrate how much of an asset your website is to your brand.
Questions you can ask include:
What was the purpose of the visit to [our brand] website?
Did you achieve your goal when visiting [our brand] website?
Social media marketing metrics
With almost everyone constantly on their phones, listening to social media is essential for any brand tracking. Social media can be a great tool not only for outreach to unhappy customers, but for developing a strong brand presence in the market and driving more traffic to your site.
To understand your brand impact through social media, you’ll need to track reach, engagement, shares, referrals to your website, click-through rate, bounce rate, conversions and cost per conversion.
How to choose which metrics to track
At this point you are laying the foundation for a business intelligence program that will inform your decisions, potentially for years to come. So when you’re selecting metrics, consider which types of data are particularly relevant to you, that you’ll want to refer back to and benchmark against in the future.
How to use metrics to improve your brand health
Once you’ve gathered your data and decided on the metrics to track, you’re able to transform your results into insights for action.
Here are our top tips on using metrics to improve brand health:
1. Plan ahead
Don’t do a project then start thinking about metrics – decide how you are going to measure brand success before you start. Use metrics as lead indicators towards your goals. Select the right brand metrics and you’ll be able to keep a handle on your brand equity now and into the future.
2. Take in the wider landscape
Your brand health study should also extend to the wider landscape of your brand. That includes your competition (direct and indirect), consumer habits that form the context of use for your products and services, and the status of related factors such as raw materials or core technologies.
3. Track over time
Tracking brand metrics isn’t a static activity – it shouldn’t just be performed as a one-and-done activity at set times of the year. To get the full picture, you’ll need to incorporate real-time tracking where possible, or at least take the measure of brand health at key stages of the customer journey. Taking blind action based on outdated data won’t help to improve conversion rates – real-time metrics tracking can give you more thorough insights into brand performance.
4. Use insights to drive your marketing strategy
Your brand metrics should inform your marketing strategy. For example, you can bolster weak points such as brand loyalty with marketing that responds to user behavior (abandoned carts, repeat purchases). Your marketing efforts can be better targeted when you use data insights to guide your actions.
How Qualtrics transforms your brand data insights
Qualtrics’ Brand Experience management software helps you to go beyond brand tracking and get to the heart of how your customers perceive and react to your brand. Increase your sales and get predictive insights, based on the wealth of data Qualtrics can collect from each stage of the customer journey.
Don’t miss a single important metric. Qualtrics’ software pulls in all relevant data from social media channels to review sites to your own operational data. Wondering about purchase intent or how perception affects your business sales? Get branding insights based on real-time analysis of feedback and experience data represented with powerful visualizations.
Better still, go beyond simply tracking data and improve your brand strength with targeted, smarter actions with faster response times. Use dynamically updated dashboards to keep you and your team ahead of your brand competitors, with insights delivered through tool integrations that you already use.