4 Tips For African Brands To Increase Brand Awareness
The joy of every business owner is to have a brand that is instantly recognised and does not require an introduction.
Brand awareness is a key influence in customer purchase decision making. Customer must first be aware of a product or service category and the players in such category before a purchase decision can be made.
Brand awareness does not mean that your consumers know every little detail of your brand, products and service, it means that they recognise your brand and know what you stand for.
If your brand is yet to be recognised by potential customers, patronage will be greatly limited.
In creating brand awareness, you must understand how to:
- Stand out from the competition;
- Ensure that you get your brand infront of your potential customers;
- Understand what purchase triggers and buying objections your customers have;
Now this sounds easy, but requires a well thought through srategy to be successful. Here are 4 tips you can leverage and build into your brand building strategy.
1. Create Partnerships
In the process of boosting your brand awareness, the power of partnerships is often overlooked or underestimated. I strongly believe that when you partner with complementing brands, you exchange value and extend your realm of awareness, brand recognition and influence.
An example is Foodpro, a client we manage at our agency. Foodpro is one of the fast-rising snack manufacturing companies in Nigeria. They recently launched GoNutz, a variety of flavoured cashew nuts. In the course of promoting these new flavoured nuts, Foodpro has shared events and partnered with related and complementary brands like Coca-Cola, Shoprite and Game by creating a bundle of Coca-Cola products and GoNutz sold across several Shoprite outlets in Nigeria. This partnership of course gave the product a suiting market appeal and increased brand awareness and reach.
2. Publish Content
This is the easiest means to increase brand awareness. The world isn’t going digital; we are already there. The days where you need to break the bank to get your content out there are far behind us. Today you can leverage digital platforms in getting the word out there.
It must be noted that the channel of communication your target audience uses plays a huge role when creating content for your brand. Identifying the most critical platform to engage them on and understanding the type of content that will be valuable to them is key.
For example, if your audience spends more time on LinkedIn, then you know long-form content will be perfectly suited for this target demographic.This long form content could be distributed on Medium or your website’s internal blog, which is a great way to repurpose content and increase the footprint it creates for you.
3. Solicit Referrals from your Customers
This is similar to establishing partnerships, just that this time it’s with your customers and not with other brands. When you are starting to get the word of your brand out, see how you can partner with your first set of customers and figure out how you can get them to bring you into their own communities? In other words, how can they become brand evangelists for you? If a friend affirms the integrity of a product to me, I’m more likely to purchase without further inquiry. This also holds true for many other people.
To make customers brand evangelists, you must offer them value. The good old ‘‘refer a friend and get a 10% discount on your next purchase’’ technique still works even in our digital era. A good example of a brand who used this method effectively is the ride-sharing platform Bolt. When they launched in Nigeria, they gave referral codes to early riders for discounted rides. This encouraged other people to try the platform and in turn, gave them prominence.
4. Stay Consistent
To effectively increase brand awareness, you must be consistent. This cannot be overemphasized. Remember that being distinguishable is a key focus when building awareness for your brand. For you to stand out and stand out rightly, you must be consistent across all your touchpoints. Everything about your brand must be in sync, from your tone of voice to down your design style. A brand is a story playing out in real-time and all its plot must tie-up.
Take, for instance, Monster Energy Drink. The brand is centred around extreme lifestyle and it’s reflected in their written copy, visual designs and endorsements. I first saw the Monster claw rip on a snapback, then on monster trucks before I even knew it was a drink. The first time I saw it on a shelf, I just picked it up without much thought, because I recognised the brand. Being an extreme sports head, I had seen the mark endorsed already by my favourites. That’s the power of consistency.
Creating awareness for a brand is a process, this is just a head start. You can go on and try these techniques out and see the outcomes for yourself — give it some time — the brand building is not magic.
If you are looking for a Digital Partner that can help you develop an in-depth strategy on how to increase your brand awareness, simply leave a comment below. My colleagues and I at Futuresoft will be excited to work with you.