Brand awareness is key to tech companies’ success, especially when it comes to startups.
We have previously spoken on the importance of Humanizing Tech, or making tech businesses more humane, friendlier, and self-explanatory. Dive into this article if you feel like your tech business has the potential to become different.
Today, we’ll roll out the pain points that most of the tech companies are suffering from; and explain why approaching brand awareness correctly might be an antidote to them.
Brand Awareness can be considered as the personality of a company; a magnetic force that pulls people in. If your brand were a person, its awareness would depend on how famous and known it is in the crowd.
In "How Brands Grow," Byron Sharp says that the correlation between brand awareness and revenue is real and proven. By focusing on market penetration and the wide reach of a brand rather than solely on loyalty among heavy users, he emphasizes the need to make the brand more prominent in the minds of as many consumers as possible.
The power of a brand is essential for ANY company, but here's the twist: tech companies often get caught up in the nuts and bolts, the features, and the functions. They think that their customers are all logic, all brain, and no heart.
Meanwhile, there are stacks of studies and heaps of real-world examples shouting about how vital it is to build and grow a brand. Companies that invest in their brands, even tech ones, end up winning big time.
Take the Airbnb case, for instance: It's an astonishing story of how a brand idea turned into a company mantra, guiding everything from product development to mergers and acquisitions. And guess what? They've been growing every year while cutting back on marketing spending since 2019.
Sharp encapsulates it all, but it's like the tech world has its headphones on, blissfully ignoring the beat.
1. Targeting Future Demand: In the tech industry, tomorrow's consumers are already shaping today's market. The only way to grow with them is to build brand awareness. It's like painting a picture of the future and making sure your brand is in it. You're not just selling products; you're becoming part of their lives.
2. Building Additional Value to Your Products and Services: Your tech gadget might be cool, but with strong brand awareness, it's not just a gadget; it's a lifestyle. It's more than functions and features; it's a statement that resonates with people.
3. Creating Connections Around Your Brand: Think of your brand as a party everyone wants to be at. It's not just about attracting customers but also investors, partners, and even fans. It's a community where everyone gets something and gives something back.
4. Driving Growth & Customer Loyalty: Let's face it; we love things we know. Familiarity breeds loyalty in the tech world. Once people connect with your brand, they stick with it, tell their friends about it, and voila! You have your very own brand ambassadors.
5. Enhancing Market Positioning Through Perception Control: Perception is reality in the fast-paced tech industry. Building strong brand awareness allows a company to shape how the market perceives it. This control helps position the brand as an innovator, a solution provider, or even a revolutionary force. Strong positioning sets the stage for market dominance and long-term success.
6. Strengthening Competitive Edge Through Emotional Engagement: In an industry where products often look and function similarly, brand awareness facilitates emotional connections. Tech companies that build robust brand identities are not just selling products but creating experiences and fulfilling aspirations. This emotional bond can be a significant differentiator in a competitive marketplace.
7. Mitigating Risks and Enhancing Crisis Management: Strong brand awareness is like an insurance policy for tech companies. When a crisis strikes, such as a product failure or security breach, a well-established brand built on trust can lessen the impact. Customers are more forgiving, and the media may be less harsh if the company has a well-regarded brand. This not only mitigates short-term damage but also protects long-term reputation and market position.
Last spring, as we crafted a brand identity for Raiseway - a platform streamlining crowdfunding - our deep research highlighted the main hurdles business owners face daily. These insights became the foundation of our design concepts:
1. Small business owners face the daunting task of juggling multiple responsibilities, which can be incredibly challenging.
2. While crowdfunding may initially appear simple, entrepreneurs quickly realize that it demands expertise in marketing, legal knowledge, and accurate financial projections to achieve success.
3. Existing solutions often lack engagement; warm and friendly interactions fail to make business owners feel valued and competent, adding to their existing anxiety and stress levels.
You can learn more about the case here.
Creating brand awareness requires a strategic approach tailored to the tech industry. Here are some effective strategies to consider:
1. Mastering Transparency:
Embrace openness in your business journey by sharing not only successes but also challenges and missteps. You can achieve that by starting Building in Public, for instance. Encourage a culture of authenticity and real human connection instead of portraying an image of unattainable perfection. This transparent approach will resonate with those who value genuine interactions and attract a community truly engaged with your brand and product.
2. Telling a Real Brand Story
Storytelling is a powerful tool to create brand engagement and increase awareness. Read books on writing and envision your brand as a character, building a story according to the fundamental principles of storytelling (like The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell). Share your brand's journey, values, and mission through various mediums, such as blog posts, podcasts, and videos. Highlight the problem your tech solution solves and the unique approach you take. But don’t forget about being real in the process. By humanizing your brand and aligning with your audience on an emotional level, you can let your brand enter their world, empathize with them, leave a lasting impact, and build a loyal following.
3. Offering Valuable Content:
Providing valuable content is an effective way to establish your brand as a trusted resource. But in the process, you need to a) pay close attention to what the audience wants and b) adapt to the capabilities of different platforms. Create blog posts, whitepapers, e-books, and videos that address industry challenges, offer insights, and provide solutions. Share this content through your website, social media platforms, and industry publications, unfolding the value, tailoring it to specific platforms, and aligning it with audience desires. This approach will expand your reach and position your brand as an authority in the tech space.
4. Harnessing the Power of Synergy:
Cultivate growth by initiating actions that complement and boost one another. Whether it's collaborating with like-minded businesses, creating shareable content to encourage user engagement, or implementing a referral program that rewards both the referrer and referee, these synergistic efforts can fuel your growth. By strategically intertwining various elements, you're not only promoting growth but also setting the foundation for sustainable expansion and loyalty.
5. Building Authentic Influencer Relationships:
Instead of merely hiring influencers, forge meaningful connections with thought leaders who genuinely resonate with your brand. Find those who share your vision, values, and commitment to the tech industry. Collaboration with authentic influencers can create sincere endorsements that extend beyond mere promotion, strengthening your brand's credibility and fostering a community of followers who trust your products.
6. Engaging Actively in the Tech Community:
Rather than just attending or sponsoring events, become an active participant in industry discussions, workshops, and community meetups. Contribute your insights, share your challenges, and learn from others in the field. By engaging authentically in the tech community, you not only increase your brand's visibility but also create lasting relationships with peers and potential customers who value your genuine involvement."
7. Empowering Customer Advocacy:
Encourage customers to become ambassadors for your brand by genuinely appreciating their feedback and stories. Instead of merely collecting testimonials, foster a space where customers can openly share their experiences, both positive and negative. Highlight these stories in your marketing and listen to their insights to continually improve. This level of customer engagement builds trust and turns your customers into loyal advocates, multiplying the impact of word-of-mouth advertising.
While measuring brand awareness can be challenging, there are several metrics and tools you can use to gauge its effectiveness. Here are some key ways to measure brand awareness for tech companies:
1. Website Traffic: Monitor website traffic to see how many visitors are directly searching for your brand or clicking on your URL. Analyze referral sources and track the impact of your marketing efforts on driving traffic to your website
2. Customer Surveys: Conduct regular customer surveys to gather feedback on brand awareness. Ask specific questions about brand recognition, recall, and associations to assess the effectiveness of your brand awareness strategies
3. Net Promoter Score (NPS): NPS measures customer loyalty and their likelihood to recommend your brand. A high NPS indicates strong brand awareness and customer satisfaction, while a low score may signal a need to improve brand visibility and perception
4. Social Media Mentions: Monitor social media platforms to track mentions of your brand. Analyze the sentiment of these mentions and identify influencers or industry thought leaders discussing your brand. Increased mentions and positive sentiment indicate growing brand awareness
5. Partnerships and Collaborations: Measure the number and quality of partnerships or collaborations your brand has formed. Successful partnerships with industry leaders or complementary brands can significantly enhance brand awareness and credibility
It's totally cool to treat your brand awareness as an asset because this asset can be used for many awesome things. One of them is precisely enhancing customer service and experience.
It's worth noting that sometimes tech companies use their media not just as a media channel but as a separate customer service avenue. This approach exemplifies how brand awareness can be utilized in multifaceted ways, seamlessly integrating various aspects of the business to enhance the customer experience.
Important read: According to a study conducted by the PwC team, 42 percent of buyers are willing to pay more for a quality and friendly consumer experience, while 52 percent value quicker and more efficient service.
Price is important for business customers, but great customer service is key to making people stick with your brand. Studies show, 73 percent of people say that a good experience makes them more loyal to a brand. And loyal customers don't just keep coming back; they also talk up your brand to others, helping influence their buying choices.
In fact, people who really love your brand are 83 percent more likely to tell others about it and 50 percent more likely to sway someone's buying decision compared to a regular customer.
So, if you want to get the word out about your brand, you need to offer top-notch customer service that not only makes your clients happy but first and foremost shows them the real value of what you're selling.
Reach customers where they are: live chat, phone, email, or social media. Being present across platforms enhances their experience and helps you gain invaluable insights.
Offer round-the-clock support, or alternative resources like FAQs and chatbots. Monitor performance metrics to continuously refine your service.
In tech, personalization counts. Use CRM and data tools to understand each customer's journey, fostering trust and loyalty.
The first interaction matters. Offer clear guidance, videos, and support, ensuring a positive start to your customer relationship.
Stay ahead in service by predicting customer needs based on their behaviors and industry trends.
Seek customer opinions through surveys and reviews, and act on them. This proves you value their perspective.
Go beyond selling: create spaces for customers to connect, share, and bond over shared interests.
Regularly gauge customer happiness using surveys and metrics, preparing yourself for necessary improvements.
Being B-Corp certified reflects your broader commitment. This holistic approach differentiates you in the market, resonating with like-minded consumers.