Ensuring that consumers hear about and recognise your brand – whether that’s online or on the high street – is all part of creating a successful brand strategy. There’s a lot to think about when planning your strategy but getting your brand out there into the world is vital to building your reputation.
Brand awareness refers to the degree of familiarity consumers have with a company and their products or services. Having a good level of brand awareness is key for both small and large brands alike, particularly when it comes to promoting new products or your latest features.
Although awareness campaigns used to be run via expensive TV ads and billboards, social media is now the go-to platform to run brand awareness campaigns in an efficient and cost-effective way. Facebook is a leading platform to run such campaigns and drive consumer recognition. In this blog, we explore why this might be, as well as highlighting best practice principles of running a successful brand awareness campaign on Facebook.
Compared with other types of campaigns, brand awareness campaigns do not revolve around driving sales as their primary goal. In fact, the key objective is to establish a presence to ensure consumers are aware of who you are and what you do. Your campaign can be designed to support specific goals alongside the lifecycle of your brand, products, or services, which can include the following:
- Building brand awareness with a new audience
- Reminding an existing audience of your brand
- Strengthening your brand messaging and values
- Shifting brand perception and reviving brand image
Facebook has been a leading platform when it comes to running brand awareness campaigns for several years now – and for good reason. There are many valuable perks to advertising via this platform one of which is brand awareness campaigns.
Creating and running a brand awareness campaign was historically only accessible to larger brands with a substantial marketing budget. This was due to the limited amount of available advertising platforms. From expensive TV ads to costly billboards, companies were faced with significant costs to broadcast their brand awareness campaigns.
The rise of social platforms has, however, revolutionised the advertising game. Nowadays, even the smallest start-ups with stringent budgets can run brand awareness campaigns. Facebook, in fact, allows companies to reach a broad audience with a small investment, which is easily controlled and adjusted as required.
One of the key benefits of running brand awareness campaigns on Facebook is that you can choose your audience. The demographics and other relevant data that Facebook holds about its users mean you can select parameters such as your target market’s age, gender, location, interests and more. This ensures you reach your desired audience and make your budget work harder.
Facebook is currently the largest social network platform in the world with approximately 2.89 billion monthly active users. This remarkably wide and readily available audience presents a great opportunity to reach consumers effectively.
Consumers who have seen your brand awareness adverts are more likely to become paying customers. Facebook allows you to make the conversion process quicker with techniques such as remarketing. Combining brand awareness campaigns with remarketing and PPC options can be very powerful in generating new customers and increasing sales.
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Once you have defined your marketing goals, you can use the following steps to develop an effective campaign:
Whether you are looking to address a new or existing audience, you need to ensure you fully understand them before developing a campaign. Not only should you know your target demographics, but you should also have a deeper understanding of your potential customers. Seek to understand what their interests, values, frustrations, lifestyles, and personalities are to help you figure out their needs and where you can offer them support.
Once you have established a clear picture of your target market, focus on your own brand values. Who are you? What are you trying to achieve? What do you stand for? It is important that you establish your core values and USPs as these will allow you to differentiate yourself from your competitors and develop a message that is authentic, unique, and true to your company.
It is important to emphasise the values you have in common with your target audience. In fact, creating a brand image that consumers can relate to will allow you to establish lasting brand awareness through an emotional connection.
Once you know your target market and have established your core brand values, you can start mapping out ideas for your brand awareness campaign. As you will look to strike up a rapport and emotional connection with your potential customers, the message behind your campaign will be very different to the types of pitches used in sales campaigns. In fact, marketers should aim to develop a message that touches people emotionally. Storytelling is at the heart of brand awareness campaigns and should be used to create the desired attention-grabbing effect.
Consumers are constantly bombarded with adverts and other types of marketing communications. Therefore, you need to choose the right format for your brand awareness campaign. This will depend on the best way to convey your message. From eye-catching images with meaningful captions to mini videos that will stop your audience from scrolling, you can choose the options that feel right for your campaign.
Once you have developed your brand awareness campaign and designed your creative ads, setting up the campaign on Facebook simply involves the following steps:
- Open your Facebook business ads manager
- In the campaigns tab, click the green ‘+ create’ button
- Select ‘brand awareness’ as your campaign objective
- Name your campaign and turn on campaign budget optimisation if you want to let Facebook allocate the budget between your ads depending on performance
- Name your ad set and enter your budget, schedule, audience, and placements (automatic placements are recommended to optimum results)
- Name your ads and upload your creatives. You can add several ads per ad set, although three to six ads are typically recommended
- Publish your brand awareness campaign and monitor the results. It is important to note that it may take a few days to start seeing results and that such campaigns should run for at least two weeks
As we’ve mentioned before, the key objective of brand awareness campaigns isn’t to drive sales but to develop brand recognition. Therefore, it can be difficult to measure the success of these campaigns as their metrics can’t always be quantified.
However, Facebook provides some useful tools to help assess the effectiveness of your brand awareness campaigns.
Once your ads are up and running, you will be able to view several useful metrics to establish how successful they are. The stats Facebook collects on brand awareness campaign ads include:
- Reach: the number of unique users your ad reached
- Frequency: the number of times one user saw your ad
- Impressions: the number of times your ad was viewed
- CPM: the cost per 1,000 impressions
- Video plays at 100%: the number of times your video ad was played until the end (if applicable)
- Estimated ad recall lift: the estimated number of people that are likely to remember your brand
- Estimated ad recall lift rate: the percentage of people that are likely to remember your brand
These are all useful metrics to establish how well your campaign and individual ads are performing. However, the level of success of your brand awareness campaigns will be easier to establish once you have run several campaigns as you will be able to benchmark them against each other.
Brand lift tests allow you to use brand polling and other brand awareness measurements to assess the true value of your campaign. These tests work by splitting your target audience into random ‘test and control’ groups and comparing the performance of each group over time.
The brand lift study results will give you more intricate metrics than the standard ad metrics. In fact, they work on a point-based system and will measure aspects such as lift in affinity, lift in action intent, and lift in ad recall.
Follow these steps to set up a brand lift test on Facebook:
- In your Facebook ads manager, click ‘campaigns’ and then ‘experiments’
- Select the ‘brand survey’ option
- Select the campaign(s) you want to run your brand lift test on
- Set up your poll questions (these can revolve around general brand awareness, ad recall, familiarity, brand perception or action intent)
Procter & Gamble (P&G): ‘The man your man could smell like’ campaign
This was a highly successful brand awareness campaign to revive an older brand image. At the time, P&G’s brand Old Spice was associated with an older audience, so the objective was to overhaul the brand’s image and appeal to a younger audience. They created a fun and playful advert that was launched on social media. The advert immediately went viral, reaching over 20 million views in just three days.
As well as the fun element of this campaign, having a deep understanding of their desired target audience played a key part in its success. In fact, the target market research conducted showed that 60% of body wash purchases were made by women. The campaign was therefore addressed to women to help maximise results.
The campaign resulted in a 2,700% increase in Twitter followers, 800% increase in Facebook interactions, and a 300% increase in website traffic.
This brand awareness campaign aimed to strengthen the brand’s image and values, which was achieved with a powerful message that allowed Dove to establish a deep emotional connection with consumers. The research undertaken by Dove showed that women buy beauty products not only to look better but also to feel better.
The campaign revolved around an ad where a forensic artist created two blind sketches of each woman in the ad. One of the sketches was made with a description given by the woman being drawn, and the other sketch was made with a description given by someone else. All the sketches where women described themselves were a lot less flattering.
This was a powerful storytelling angle, which delivered a strong message that the target audience could relate to. Dove showed that they understood the frustrations of its customers and delivered a relevant campaign that truly touched their audience.
This was another campaign with a powerful and current message. Starbucks’ values revolve around individuality and inclusion as each customer’s name is written on takeaway cups.
Their brand awareness campaign focused on these values. The advert was made in partnership with Mermaids, an organisation that supports gender-diverse and transgender youths. The message conveyed was that a person can be whoever they want to be and the name they choose to use will be honoured and respected.
This created a real buzz on social media due to the emotional impact it generated.
Brand awareness campaigns can be powerful tools to develop brand recognition and establish a connection with potential customers. Facebook is a great platform to broadcast such campaigns and reach the desired audience for optimum results, as it offers a cost-effective option with multiple tools, such as target audience selection, remarketing options, brand lift tests and ad metrics dashboards.
Before setting up a brand awareness campaign on Facebook, it's important to consider elements such as your desired target market, your brand values and image, the message you want to deliver and how you want to deliver it.
By creating powerful brand awareness campaigns that generate a real buzz, you can send your name far and wide and attract an intrigued audience who will view you as their new go-to brand!
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