What is brand checkup?
A brand check-up is an assessment of the brand’s position relative to competing brands in the market, brand perception by consumers, employees and top management of the company, as well as partners.
From this definition, the fact that a brand audit can only be comprehensive or, in other words, detailed, i.e. comprehensive brand audit = external brand audit + internal brand audit.
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So, what does an external brand audit mean of or consist of?
- Analysis of information on all previous marketing activities on the brand / s being audited by the Client
- Collection, systematization, and analysis of information from open sources (desk research)
- Data analysis by independent research companies AS Nielsen, TNS Gallup (MMI, AdFact) or Comcon (R-TGI).
- Store-check (visiting, monitoring and collecting information at points of sale)
- Focus group discussions or in-depth interviews (depending on the market and target audience) with representatives of target consumer groups
- Expert interviews with market participants (competitors, partners, experts, etc.)
- Consumer surveys, as needed (sample and survey methodology depends on the market and target audience)
The main components of the internal brand audit:
- Analysis within the company’s corporate policy (mission and vision of the company, corporate code, employee motivation system (material and non-material), etc.)
- The system of internal communications in the company (internal PR, vertical-horizontal relations, team building, etc.)
- Working sessions and individual interviews with employees of the company, including business owners, top managers, as well as employees of marketing, sales, technologists, etc.
It is easy to see that the external and internal audit of the brand combines qualitative and quantitative components. This is understandable because only comprehensive information reflects the real position of the brand in the market and in the company.
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There are a number of tasks that are more effectively solved by the method of focus-group discussions and there are tasks whose most effective way to solve are in-depth interviews. So, for our task, namely, brand audit, we can use both focus group discussions and in-depth interviews with representatives of the target audience. The choice of a qualitative research method depends here on the market and on the target audience and its degree of attainability.
Indicators of brand awareness
- Brand Awareness — the degree of brand awareness;
- Brand Loyalty — attitude, brand loyalty;
- Brand Relevance — brand compliance with customer expectations;
- Brand Power — the power of the brand, the ability to dominate in this category of products. This assessment is important when a decision is made to raise the brand to check up cost or other strategic decisions.
Awareness indicators are key marketing indicators since the level of spontaneous brand recognition directly affects the number of purchases made by the target audience. The higher the knowledge, the greater the number of purchases is. Such studies allow you to consistently monitor changes in the brand’s position relative to competitors, its perception by potential buyers. The results are a powerful catalyst for the company’s advertising and PR policy.
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When is brand check-up services required?
It is advisable to conduct a brand check up regularly, and not only when problems have already arisen. It is regular auditing that will be able to show the real picture and reveal both trends in the market and the vector of development of your brand.
A brand audit is absolutely necessary for making strategic decisions, such as: is it worth expanding the brand to adjacent categories, and if so, which ones, is it necessary to re-position and correct the brand concept, develop brand architecture, develop and introduce new brands, etc.
Why do you need to audit the brand?
The main purpose of the brand audit is to assess its development. As a rule, brand diagnostics is carried out once a year, its results allow to evaluate the brand’s contribution to the financial results of a business and the quality of the marketing team’s work.
So, the brand check-up offered in the following situations:
- Management tasks that allow you to understand the brand grows or falls. It is important that against the background of sales growth and good financial performance, brand degradation may manifest itself, which will inevitably lead to business stagnation in the next three years. The brand audit allows detecting negative trends in time and recommending “well-being” measures.
- Staff motivation. Brand key performance indicators become part of the program of material incentives for employees of the marketing department — marketing director, brand manager, and top management.
- Buying or selling a business. An audit helps a seller to provide pre-sales preparation in advance in order to maximize the price. A brand check up helps a business buyer to reduce risks and understand the company’s long-term perspectives, which are guaranteed by brand power rather than current (albeit good) financial results.
Most often, companies measure brand health, rarely at 360 degrees, mainly for a number of critical characteristics — brand knowledge, commitment, and distribution. But diagnostics of the brand management system and brand value assessment in practice is rare. As a rule, the higher the competition in the market, the wider the toolkit is used.
KATASIS brand audit methodology
Structurally, there are significant differences between corporate and consumer brand audits. Corporate brands are clear and intimate images of mega-corporations and management structures, they are based on leadership. Their audiences are managers, employees, owners, shareholders, investors, the media and government structures. And the corporate brand audit is aimed at studying leadership and audiences.
Here are popular desk research, in-depth interviews, focus groups, and expert assessments. Consumer brands are created in order to SELL, they are based on marketing. Consumer brand is created only for the consumer. And the consumer brand audit is aimed at studying sales and the consumer.
The best results in studying the consumer can be achieved with the use of hardware techniques — psychometric and neurometry studies. The unique brand-testing system developed by brand check up company KATASIS is primarily focused on the b2b sector and allows you to evaluate brands with an accuracy of up to 95% that is inaccessible to classical research methods.