In marketing, brand equity (link not affiliated with or endorsed by Grow Disrupt) refers to a brand's value and is determined by the consumers' perception of the brand. It's the added value a business gets from a product with a well-known brand name rather than a generic counterpart.
When customers hold a brand in high regard, it has positive brand equity. Conversely, a brand with negative brand equity constantly under-delivers, falls short of customer expectations, and creates unfavorable word-of-mouth. Simply put, brand equity pertains to a brand's reputation.
Businesses build brand equity through marketing and messaging, making them distinct and instantly recognizable while maintaining the reliability and quality their loyal customers expect. Establishing and maintaining positive brand equity requires time, patience, and a lot of hard work.
How to Build Brand Equity
Developing favorable brand equity requires time and effort. Follow these four steps to establish your own brand equity:
Step 1: Build Brand Awareness
Your brand's identity sets it apart from the competition. To increase brand awareness, customers must see your brand at the right time and place. You can achieve this with a strategic marketing plan and brand placement.
Content marketing and social media marketing are great tools for building brand awareness. Be present and active on several platforms, including email, social media, and websites. Constantly provide relevant and valuable information, and stay in touch with your customers through emails or newsletters.
Positive customer experiences, along with word-of-mouth and targeted marketing, can all contribute to increased brand awareness.
Step 2: Know and Share Your Brand Story
Know what your brand stands for and how to successfully communicate your core values to your target audience. Most people choose brands that share their ideas rather than just meet their immediate needs.
Develop a stronger brand identity by providing unique and rewarding customer experiences that support your company's values. If your business is committed to social and environmental causes, share your initiatives with your audience. Today's consumers, particularly the younger ones, appreciate businesses that genuinely support environmental or social programs.
Step 3: Foster Positive Customer Experiences
When people have positive sentiments about your brand, there is a good chance that they will turn into loyal customers. How they view your brand—based on factors like quality, credibility, and excellence—affects brand equity.
The same holds true for how your target market perceives your brand. Does your brand inspire positive feelings like joy and excitement? If the answer is yes, more individuals are likely to gravitate toward it. On the other hand, widespread negative sentiment can drive away potential customers.
Step 4: Strengthen Bonds with Loyal Customers
Forming a strong bond with your customers is essential to building positive brand equity. When consumers have a real connection with a brand, they completely trust it and remain loyal.
Such a bond is significant since it leads to repeat business and long-term customers. To cultivate this type of relationship, customer service must always be a priority, and the customer experience must be exceptional. Give your customers a reason to stay loyal by making product launches and special offers exclusive to them.
How to Maintain Brand Equity
Building positive brand equity is only half the job. You must work tirelessly to maintain your brand's positive image and reputation. Otherwise, you will quickly lose everything you have accomplished.
In addition to routinely analyzing your marketing efforts to see where equity typically stems from, here are some tips to help you maintain brand equity:
Tip 1: Stay Authentic
Today, authenticity is the pinnacle of credibility. Many customers use ad blockers, anti-spam solutions, and other defense mechanisms to filter non-genuine content. If you can be authentic in all that you say and do, your customers will perform your marketing for you via word-of-mouth, social media, or any other marketing channels.
Authenticity goes beyond your marketing campaigns into every touchpoint of your business. Be consistently honest and committed to your core values. Regularly revisit your value proposition and principles. Every sales copy, landing page, social media campaign, newsletter, and product description must always stay authentic to your brand’s core values.
Tip 2: Stay Consistent
Consistency establishes and helps maintain brand equity. Once you have built a brand, present it consistently across all your communications, including advertising, social media, and all employee-customer interactions.
Create and use a brand identification template to facilitate brand consistency across all marketing channels. The template can include several details, such as typography, brand personality, and tone of voice.
Tip 3: Engage Your Audience
Engaging your customers and prospects in conversation is an effective long-term strategy for building and maintaining brand equity. A strategic social media presence is a cost-effective and efficient approach to communicating more of your brand's personality to your customers.
Ensure that you respond to every social media post and direct message sent to your business across all platforms. Develop connections and treat customers as actual people, not as mere numbers. Identify and provide solutions for pain points, seek feedback, listen to your customers, and value their opinions.
Tip 4: Create Quality Control Procedures
As your brand and brand equity grow, make sure that you consistently deliver exceptional products and services. Establish quality control procedures to ensure that your customers receive the best solutions every time they interact with your business.
Evaluate all levels of customer interactions with your brand, from user experience on websites to customer experience in physical stores.
Grow Your Brand Equity
Brand equity is a clear measure of an organization’s performance, particularly in comparison to its competitors. When you prioritize shaping how consumers think and feel about your brand, you set up your business for long-term success.
At Grow Disrupt, it is our mission to empower small business owners to thrive and succeed in a highly competitive environment. Check out our articles and discover ways to elevate your brand and grow your business.
About the Author: Arleen Atienza has been writing for several organizations and individuals in the past six years. Her educational background in Psychology and professional experience in corporate enable her to approach a wide range of topics including finance, business, beauty, health and wellness, and law, to name a few.