Customers have a lot of brands and products to choose from. How does one choose a type of toothpaste over another? Is there more than the price that influences the purchasing decision? Definitely yes.
In this article, we are going to focus on brand perception. How do your customers perceive your brand and why it is important to know this? Plus, we are going to show you some examples of brands and how shoppers perceive them.
What is brand perception?
When you enter the store, what makes you purchase a brand of chips over another? What about a brand of personal hygiene products? We’ll tell you: brand perception. The way we perceive brands has a major impact on our purchasing decisions.
Brand perception is a mix of emotions and perceptions regarding a certain brand. It is how customers feel about your brand, not how you want them to feel about the brand. For instance, what thoughts and feelings do you have when you think about a well-known brand like Coca-Cola? You can just imagine the cold, frizzy drink being poured into a tall glass during a hot summer day.
Why does it matter?
Why is brand perception important? Because it has a major impact on how shoppers interact with your brand. While brand perception is just a mental association it can lead to an emotional connection between the customer and the brand. When deciding which product to buy, people take into account the way they perceive the brand.
When customers think highly of the brand and have a positive feeling toward it, then they become loyal to it. Also, statistics show that 86% of loyal customers will recommend the brand to their family and friends.
However, remember that brand perception can change over time. Also, there are a few things that impact the brand perception, such as customer service, quality, value, features, and the sales process. When there’s a change in any of these factors, then the positive perception can quickly change to a negative one.
Brand perception helps develop brand equity. Also known as the value of a company, brand equity is determined by consumer perception of and experiences with the brand. When customers have a great opinion regarding the brand it has positive brand equity. This influences both market share and sales.
How to measure brand perception?
Now that we know how important brand perception is, let’s see how you can measure it.
1. Brand perception surveys
This is one of the most accurate ways in which you can measure brand perception. With a brand perception survey, you can find out what shoppers think and feel about your brand. Some questions that you can ask in this survey include:
- How would you describe this brand?
- How does this brand make you feel?
- How would you describe your level of emotional attachment to this brand?
- How would you describe this to a friend?
- On a scale from 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this brand?
2. Social Media Monitoring
We live in a digital era and everything happens on social media. Nowadays, when shoppers want to complain or applaud a brand, they turn to social media. Don’t just focus on positive mentions and take into account the negative ones. These are the most important because there’s some feedback that you can implement which will help you increase customer satisfaction.
Also, apart from simply monitoring social media comments, reviews, and mentions, don’t forget to engage with shoppers online. Answer their questions, apologize when your products were not up to standards, and thank shoppers for their positive feedback.
3. Collect customer feedback
This can be done online and in-store. A simple satisfaction survey can show you how customers truly feel about your brand. It should be a red flag when multiple shoppers complain about the same thing. Whether it is the products, the customer service, or the price, take into account the feedback and try to implement it.
Examples of brand perceptions
Procter & Gamble
P&G is one of the most well-known CPG brands. It produces and sells various household and personal care products, from shampoos to cleaning supplies. While the products sold by this brand are part of a non-attractive category, P&G is positively perceived by shoppers. Why? Because of their branding strategy.
It’s almost impossible to think about P&G and not think of it as the “Proud sponsor of Moms”. While other brands focused on sponsoring athletes during the Olympics, P&G supported the mothers. Here’s one of their most successful and emotional campaign:
Patagonia is another brand that needs to be mentioned when we talk about brand perception. While this brand produces high-quality clothes, a few years ago Patagonia was referred to as Patagucci because of their high prices.
What did the brand do to maintain a positive image? It implemented a unique campaign that focused on sustainability. Shoppers who had products from Patagonia could come to get them fixed for free. Their emotional initiative says a lot about the emotional connection we have with our clothes.
The Honest Company
One unicorn that has fallen and got back up again. The Honest Company was founded in 2012 by Jessica Alba. This brand was founded due to the lack of eco-friendly and natural baby products and home goods. Until 2017 this brand was considered a unicorn because of how fast it was rising. However, greenwashing is not something that any brand should try.
The Honest Company was involved in a class-action lawsuit over the ingredients used in some products. As you might expect, this had a major impact on brand perception. While in the last few years the brand managed to increase sales, people still remember that The Honest Company was not so honest.
How do your customers perceive your brand?
As we’ve discovered in this article brand perception is a key element that can help you get more loyal customers, increase sales, and referrals. Knowing this, it’s time to find out how shoppers perceive your brand. This will offer you a clear picture of the value of your brand and products and will help you know how to improve the brand image.