Do You Need to Track Your Brand?

Before you consider tracking your brand, ask yourself a few questions that can help you determine whether it’s even worthwhile.
Does your industry tend to be influenced by brand? For example the brand awareness for commodity food products may be minimal, but for consumer electronics, it’s likely to be far more important.
Is your business already branded to some degree? For example, if you own a car dealership, you’re already leveraging the manufacturer’s brand. It may be useful, however, to track the awareness of your specific dealership.

Similarly, if you own a franchise, such as a McDonald’s location, your brand is pretty much already defined. Therefore, a brand tracking study might not make sense.
There are also cases that fall in the middle, where you may do business under a brand name, but essentially run your own business. For example, if you’re a real estate broker, you probably work through a real estate agency, but your own personal brand awareness will contribute much to your success in getting listings and making sales.
If you’re just starting your business, there’s really no brand to measure, and no baseline to track against. You may not have even decided on a name for your brand yet. However, once your business is launched, and your product or service begins getting some traction, you may want to begin measuring what your target audience thinks about your brand.

Game Plan

  • Decide when to start tracking. Your business should be an established or mature company, with an established track record of sales growth so that tracking will give you relevant information.
  • Determine if brand tracking is worthwhile. If you’re already doing business through a franchise (such as McDonald’s) or a cooperative marketing agreement (such as Ace Hardware), then it might not make as much sense to go through the process of tracking your brand.
  • Consider the geography of your market. If you do business locally or regionally, you only need to track your brand in specific locations. On the other hand, if you’re doing business online, you’ll want to track your brand awareness on a national or even international basis.
  • Learn how to define and build a brand that really sticks with consumers.
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