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Ask GH: How do you measure & optimize your brand advertising?
Search and direct traffic (if URL is present on brand ad) spikes are always a good barometer for consumer interest.
My understanding of brand advertising is to create brand awareness aka recognition, with the ultimate goal of influencing purchase behaviour in store (or calls to a direct response call center). Therefore there are two primary ways to measure this, afaik:
1) Studies about brand recall (with a hint and without, aka prompted and unprompted). E.g. Show someone the headline from your ad, or the main benefit and ask what company / brand it's from... There's more to this, but that's the general idea.
2) Split testing two geomarkets - one with brand ads and one without - and seeing if you have a significant increase in in-store purchases in the one with the brand ads.
It's a question of where in the funnel you want to measure.
As to optimizing ... consider what factors play into recall and instore preference, and split test them:
- opening line aka headline of the ad (I wrote opening line because you may not think video/radio ads have headlines... but you'd be wrong)
- associations (unusual colors, e.g. pink for a men's sports team or other manly products, audio triggers like jingles)
- bundling / offer split tests
- shelf space
- instore marketing e.g. free samples, aisle caps etc
One quick and dirty way to measure brand awareness online is to look at the growth of your branded organic traffic. It's harder now with (not provided).
A more accurate way to get this same data is to run branded AdWords campaigns (at max budget to capture all impressions) and look at the growth in impressions and clicks.
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