The Blake Project, the brand consultancy behind Branding Strategy Insider, delivers interactive brand education workshops and keynote speeches designed to align marketers on essential concepts in brand management and empower them to release the full potential of the brands they manage.
Category: Brand Equity
Brand equity measurement is a core discipline of The Blake Project. Over the years we have measured the equity of numerous brands across dozens of industries through the lens of our proporietary BrandInsistenceSM brand equity measurement system, which measures the primary drivers of customer brand insistence.
The two most important measures of brand equity are (1) unaided awareness and (2) relevant differentiation. We measure relevant differentiation in two ways. We identify top-of-mind brand associations (open-ended questions) and we measure how well the brand delivers against the twenty-four most important category attributes, benefits and values. In addition, we measure (3) brand value perceptions, (4) brand accessibility and (5) the customer’s emotional connection to the brand. Together, these are the five drivers of customer brand insistence.
We also measure (6) brand vitality and (7) customer attitudinal loyalty toward the brand. Finally, we measure (8) how strongly the brand exhibits different personality attributes.
Most importantly, we measure each of these not only for our clients’ brands but also for their competitors’ brands. Positioning, by definition, is vis-à-vis something else, in this case, competitors’ brands. Based on these measures, we identify brand strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats (SWOT), including brand positioning SWOT. Finally, these lead to implications and recommended actions.
Brand equity measurement that includes each of these metrics allows for problem diagnosis and correction. We recommend that this type of rigorous measurement be conducted once a year on behalf of the brand. Only if some substantial and extraordinary product or marketing action is taken might one want to conduct this type of measurement more frequently, most likely immediately before and after the action is taken.
It is important to have selected the appropriate category description, competitive frame of reference and competitive set to include in the brand equity study. It is equally important to attain a large enough ending sample so that small movements in each of these factors can be detected.
In summary, The Blake Project’s BrandInsistenceSM brand equity measurement system can accomplish the following objectives for your brand:
• Measure the brand’s equity across a variety of dimensions at different points in time over time
• Provide diagnostic information on the reasons for the changes in brand equity
• Gauge and evaluate the brand’s progress against goals
• Provide direction on how to improve brand equity
• Provide insight into the brand’s positioning vis-à-vis its major competitors including its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats
• Provide direction on how to reposition the brand for maximum effect
As the father of modern management Peter Drucker once said, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” This is true of brand equity as well. If you are responsible for building a competitive advantage for your brand you need to measure and understand what value your brand delivers to its customers.
Sponsored by: The Brand Positioning WorkshopRead More
“You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” ~ Peter Drucker
If you are a brand manager, by definition, you are measuring the performance of your brand on a regular basis. Otherwise, how can you successfully manage your brand? Here are the items I recommend brand managers measure:
- Unaided brand awareness (for the categories in which the brand competes and perhaps for the customer benefits the brand delivers)
- Top-of-mind brand associations (your brand’s true position in its customer’s minds)
- Perceived brand delivery against the most important customer benefits
- Attitudinal loyalty toward the brand
- What customers think makes your brand unique (differentiation)
- Brand price sensitivity (a measure of brand strength)
- Brand vitality (a measure of brand marketplace momentum)
- Brand quality perceptions
- Brand value perceptions
- Brand accessibility perceptions
- Emotional connection to the brand
- Brand values alignment with its customers
- Brand distribution
- Brand market share
- Brand sales
- Brand profitability
If you have access to these brand metrics, it is more likely that you are actively managing your brand to increase its strength and performance. One should measure most of these items at least once a year and immediately after major brand initiatives.
Sponsored By: Brand AidRead More
I recently came across an interesting Q&A with Professor Byron Sharp (pictured above) from the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science. Byron was commenting on the validity, or lack thereof, of various brand equity measurement approaches:
Interviewer: But you don’t like these brand tracking services ?
Byron: There is an industry that provides special scores on brands, based on surveying customers. These services mostly claim to be measures of things like brand loyalty or brand equity. They usually have exotic names like commitment model, brand esteem, brand voltage, brand asset evaluator….Essentially they claim to be able to predict whether the brand is about to gain or lose market share.
I think any claims made for these proprietary products should be subject to independent examination. It’s the job of academics to do this testing. Some of the claims are so extraordinary, and so important that they deserve to be checked out. If they turn out to be true that would be fabulous.
Interviewer: And do these proprietary brand health surveys, these metrics, work?
Byron: Well that’s just the thing. No-one knows…Read More
Buy shares in BP. That was the bizarre advice from Royal Bank of Scotland analysts last week after those bright sparks worked out that even the worst possible costs of the Deepwater Horizon will total less than the actual drop in BP’s market value.
RBS has, of course, got it wrong again. Long after the costs have been paid and the oil cleaned up, BP will continue to live in infamy as one of the world’s most shamed brands. The official terminology for this kind of perilous state is negative brand equity. And it spells disaster and probable death for the company that was once known for being “Beyond Petroleum”.
Negative brand equity occurs when a company’s brand actually has a negative impact on its business – meaning that the company would be better off with no name at all. It happened in the Seventies when Tesco’s brand was so poorly perceived that Imperial Tobacco decided not to acquire the retailer for fear of being associated with such a tarnished and unpopular organisation. It happened again in the Nineties when Skoda discovered to its horror that it could not get British consumers to buy its cars despite spending millions on advertising. Consumer research later confirmed that two-thirds of its target market would literally not consider anything at any price that carried the Skoda badge.
And now we have BP. Like every case of negative brand equity before it, the peculiarities of the situation mean that all the traditional advantages of branding are now inverted. BP would be better off whitewashing its forecourts and removing all evidence of its Helios brand identity. That said, the actual impact of the Deepwater disaster on BP’s petrol pump sales is likely to be localised and temporary. We know from past history that petrol consumers are a fickle bunch. When the Exxon Valdez oil tanker spilled its load into Prince William Sound in 1989 the enduring impact on Exxon’s gas sales, even in the state of Alaska, was virtually zero.Read More
By 2020, branding will become the most significant value driver for boardrooms. Branding is already a very effective catalyst for better leadership; and branding helps the boardroom drive its shared vision. The primary objective of boardrooms is to build and sustain shareholder value and deliver competitive returns to shareholders. They must therefore manage by metrics, and balance short and long-term perspectives and performance. Brand equity is the combined measure of brand strength and consists of knowledge, preferences and financial considerations. Each of the measures under these three metrics is critical and the boardroom must ensure the brand portfolio scores highly in each to optimize its financial outcome.
Metrics Associated with Branding
Knowledge metrics: Measure a brand’s awareness and associations through the many stages of recognition, aided, unaided and top of mind recall. Similarly, the functional and emotional associations of a brand are important drivers of brand equity. Brands should score high on both awareness and association attributes.
Preference metrics: Measure a brand’s competitive position in the market and how it benchmarks to competing brands. Customers pass through various levels of preference toward the brand, ranging from mere awareness to strong loyalty and recurrent revenues from the customer base. A strong brand has the brand equity to build customer loyalty.
Financial metrics: Measure a brand’s monetary value through the various parameters of market share, price premium a brand commands, the revenue generation capabilities of a brand, the transaction value, the lifetime value of a brand and the rate at which brands sustains growth. These measures allow a company to estimate an accurate financial value of brand equity linked to marketing metrics. Some of them are examined in the following:Read More