How to Measure the Success of Your Branding Campaign

Blair Symes Senior Director of Product Marketing, DialogTech

In a previous post I talked about how marketers can decide what type of campaign to run (lead gen or branding) and looked specifically at measuring the success of a lead gen campaign. Now it is time to do a deep dive into brand campaigns, and cover how to approach measuring the success of your branding campaign.

What Is a Brand Campaign?

On its face, a brand campaign is pretty simple to explain: you are trying to introduce a new brand to a market or increase the awareness of your current brand. The goal here is not to drive leads (though sometimes it is a nice side effect!) but to put your messaging, your logo, your tagline, and anything else that distinguishes you in front of the audience you are trying to get to buy your product or service.

As opposed to a lead gen campaign where you are trying to target a very specific audience with a laser focus to drive leads, with a branding campaign, you can (and should) cast a wider net. You will still want to target an audience, but your targeting parameters should be a bit wider so you can reach as many people as you can within your audience. The good news is that the less targeted your campaign is within your chosen audience, the lower your CPM, and the more overall impressions you can buy. For most brand campaigns, a key factor to success is getting as many impressions as possible so the maximum number of people see your message.

How Do You Measure Effectiveness?

With a lead gen campaign there are very specific metrics to measure success: overall spend, number of leads captured, overall cost-per-lead, sales closed from those leads, ROI. Clean and simple. With a brand campaign, things are a bit murkier. Your goal is to measure your brand awareness, and that is pretty hard to do by looking at the number of clicks you received on your banner ads.

One way to accurately measure effectiveness is through an online brand survey. Prior to running your brand campaign you can run a survey against your audience to gauge the awareness of your brand and the products and services you provide. This is your baseline. When the campaign is over (or mid-campaign if the campaign will be ongoing) you should run the same survey against the same group and measure the change. From this you can get a fairly accurate sense of how effective your brand campaign has been.

Another way to measure effectiveness is to look at your “view-through rate.” This number represents the number of people who saw your ad, didn’t click, but then visited your site in a set timeframe after that (usually 7-14 days). From this metric we can also gauge the effectiveness of our campaign as we can reasonably assume this visit was a result of the user seeing our display ad, being influenced by it, and then later visiting our site.

The difference between the two is cost. If you are running a campaign on a tight budget, you may not want to undertake a brand survey and instead rely more on view-through and other measurable online data points. If you have the budget, however, the brand survey will give you some very definitive answers.

What Does Success Look Like?

The success of a brand campaign can be measured in several ways. First, you can measure  its impact on your brand’s strength. One way to do this is through the measurement surveys we mentioned above.

But another way that is becoming more popular is to measure how your branding ads influence conversions and customer acquisition. This includes metrics like overall site traffic, increase in leads, and an increase in sales that a strong brand campaign can have a positive effect on. Measuring how ad views influence future engagement is important to truly understanding campaign success.

You should consider using a call attribution and analytics solution to measure the calls that your branding campaign drives. Digital marketers often fail to capture call tracking data, despite the fact that calls convert to revenue 10-15 times more often than web form fills. A call attribution solution enables you to drill deeper to capture complete intelligences on calls from marketing source to the sale or outcome of each call. Armed with this data, you can determine which ad views helped lead a customer to call and are worth investing in as well as which callers to retarget in your search, social, and display campaigns and which to exclude.

At the end of the day, running a brand campaign can be an extremely effective, low-cost way to introduce or elevate your brand within your target market, but the key to success, like with any other campaign, is determining upfront what success will look like, and creating an effective framework for measurement.

Next Steps

If you’re interested in learning how to increase your customers and lower your CPL by targeting audiences that want to call, download our free eBook, Optimize Your Search, Facebook, and Display Targeting with Call Analytics.

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