Given how much a company's brand can influence consumer decisions when they are trying to differentiate between competing products and services, it's vital to know how your own brand is perceived.

At its simplest level, branding is all about the qualities that your products and services are known for, which can have a major bearing on your future success. So, if you're known for producing safe, reliable and strong-performing products, this can give you a major advantage over competitors in your marketplace.

While a strong brand image can take many years to build, it can be damaged very quickly, even with a single negative comment if that news travels swiftly and widely enough. So, it's essential to be continually on the pulse with how your brand is perceived in the wider market. Similarly, if you're relatively new to a market and are trying to build up your brand awareness levels, you need to know how you're currently perceived, in order to be clear about how you should move forward.

Through primary and secondary research of fresh and existing data, you'll get a better idea about this. However, while secondary research and the findings of similar studies can provide you a good starting point, only the most valuable data can be gained through primary research, with brand surveys the ideal research method for achieving this.

By conducting your own brand research, you're able to ask questions specific to what you're trying to achieve, making the answers you receive much more valuable to informing your future strategy.

Researching brands through survey distribution

89% of B2B marketers say brand awareness is their most important goal.

Content Marketing Institution (PDF download)

How Brand Surveys Fit Within Market Research

While a well-put together brand survey can increase your understanding about perceptions of your brand and levels of awareness in the wider marketplace, it can also be useful to other areas of market research including an understanding of consumer and audience, product and promotion effectiveness.

Consumer/Audience

Knowing what your audience is thinking is an essential part of any market research. And while it's essential to glean information about their habits, attitudes and desires, as well as any key demographic information you can get, the added value of knowing how they perceive you brand can further strengthen your targeting of these groups.

Take this further with consumer and audience research.

Product

Whether you're looking to launch a new product to market, or upgrade one from your existing portfolio, knowing how your wider brand is perceived can be extremely useful to your overall marketing strategy. While a consumer survey can reveal any consumer pain points or gaps you need to resolve, the findings of a brand survey can highlight any brand qualities you need to reinforce, which can provide an increased impetus to the success of your product when it's launched.

Take this further with product surveys.

Promotion

Advertising is a great way of reaching out to your target audience with a new product or service, but the messages you communicate to them needs to be compelling and engaging if you're to gain the greatest value from it. While findings from other surveys can help you construct angles to attract potential customers, the findings from a brand survey can highlight specific brand qualities you need to bring out in your messaging, which can convince these customers to find out more.

Take this further with an advertising survey.

Brand Survey Types

While a generic brand survey can give you a better idea about how your organisation is perceived, you may be looking to assess the impact of your brand in more niche areas too. From levels of market awareness and brand loyalty, to how your brand compares with others in your target market and perceptions of your brand name, especially if you want to test out new names. There are a growing number of brand surveys being used by organisations. Here is a selection of some of the most popular ones:

Brand name surveys

Different brand names can evoke varying levels of emotion in people and determine how easily they can remember the name, product or service it relates to. So, whether you're looking to start a new business, or launch a new product to market, it's valuable to know how customers might react to a potential brand name, before you decide to run with it.

A brand name survey allows you to test and ask for feedback on a range of options from your target audience, so you're able to select the one that will best appeal to your customers.

Brand awareness surveys

A good start with brand research, especially if you're a relatively new company, or have recently undergone a brand refresh, is to know how many people have heard of your brand. Running a brand awareness survey allows you to test this, while also enabling you to examine what they know and feel about your brand, and where they first heard about it.

With this insight, you're able to make any improvements you feel necessary, including the channels you use to promote your brand, so you can start building a stronger identity.

Brand loyalty surveys

Brand loyalty is one the biggest contributors to a brand's success, thanks to a core group of customers, that continues to purchase from you rather than swap to a rival brand.

Therefore, it's extremely valuable to know how large this loyal group of followers is. Through a brand loyalty survey, you're able to get a better idea of this and measure their levels of loyalty with key questions such as the Net Promoter Score question below:

"On a scale of between one to 10, how likely is it that you would recommend our brand to a friend or colleague? 1 (not likely at all) to 10 (extremely likely)."

Having a better idea about the loyalty levels among your customer base and its size can also be hugely beneficial in enabling future sales forecasting.

Brand tracking surveys

Knowing how your brand is perceived by your target audience, and how this compares with how they perceive others in your market, is also valuable. Through a brand tracking survey, you're able to track the health of your brand against these factors over time. This can also enable you to make any early and necessary improvements to help maintain the health of your brand.

77% of B2B marketing leaders say branding is critical to growth.

Business2community.com
The advantages of brand surveys

The Benefits of Brand Surveys

Brand surveys are essential in helping you to measure the strength and influence of your brand in the marketplace, but there are also a number of key benefits that they can deliver, which include:

  • Boosting your sales

    By arming you with more information about how your brand is performing, including the size and make up of your most brand loyal supports, brand surveys can help with your sales forecasting and know what improvements you need to make to further strengthen your sales.

  • Strengthening your market position

    Brand surveys can give you an essential insight into how yours and your competitors' brands are perceived, while also revealing useful intelligence about how you compare with your competitors. Such information can be used to further differentiate yourself and strengthen your position in the market.

  • Improving your targeting of products and services

    From the testing of new brand names, to fresh promotion strategies. Brand surveys can give you a better insight into how your products and services are perceived and if the brand qualities you're trying to communicate are resonating with your target audience. You can then use this information to make any improvements you need to further strengthen your targeting of these audience groups.

  • Enhancing tracking of your brand health over time

    From customer service to customer experience and many other factors in between. There are many issues that can impact the perception of your brand, so it's essential to be able to keep track of this. By running regular brand surveys you'll be much better able to track changes and identify and resolve any developing issues before they become major problems, so you can maintain the health of your brand.

Brand Survey Best Practice

With a wide range of different brand surveys that you could potentially carry out it's prudent to be clear from the outset how you will approach it, if you're to gain the maximum value from running one. Here are a few best practice considerations to think about:

  1. Be clear about what you're looking to measure?

    From levels of brand awareness to the qualities most associated with your brand. There are potentially a lot things you could be looking to evaluate in connection with your brand, so it's important to be clear from the outset, which areas you're looking to measure, so you can create appropriate survey questions that are most likely to get the insight you need from your target audience.

  2. Finding your audience

    This will depend on what you're trying to measure. If you're looking to test out a new brand name for a product, you may have enough contacts within your current address book to move forward with. Alternatively, if you're relatively new to a market and are trying to assess how well your brand is known, it's likely that you won't have enough of the right contacts to measure this. In such a scenario, you would be better placed buying your responses through a consumer panels service, which can quickly provide you with the sample you need.

    With our own consumers panels service we've able to provide instant access to more than 20 million respondents globally. So, whatever you're looking to survey and whatever demographic you want to target, we can get you the responses you need within your required timeframe.

  3. Get the right survey software in place

    From user-friendly software, ready-made and customisable templates, advanced features and wide-ranging distribution channels, that make it quick and simple to create and send your survey, to powerful analysis and reporting tools, that enable you to quickly draw actionable insight from your data. It's crucial to have the right survey software in place if you're to obtain the best results from what you've set out to achieve.

    Having already supported over 300, 000 users, our survey can do all of this. And with the ongoing development of our survey software, we're making it even simpler and quicker to create, send and analyse surveys, with tools that will also maximise its impact with respondents.

  4. Pitfalls to avoid

    It's important to protect yourself against bad data, as this can damage the validity of your results. Most of today's online survey platforms have some capabilities to automatically quarantine low quality responses, but you can help yourself by looking out for and then removing:

    1. Straight liners: these are people who just provide the same neutral answer all the way through your survey. And it's impossible to draw any useful conclusions from respondents who just provide neutral straight-line answer to all your questions. So, you need to remove these, so that you're left with the most honest and useful opinions of the remaining respondents who took your survey.
    2. Speeders: You should also look to remove anyone who you believe may have taken your survey unreasonably quickly. If they have not taken enough time to read your questions and formulate their answers, it's unlikely that they will provide you with the honest feedback you need.
Brand survey best practices

Consistent presentation of a brand has been seen to increase revenue by 33 percent

Lucidpress.com

Brand Survey Questions

If you're to better understand how your brand is perceived and strengthen its impact in the marketplace, you need to be touching on the right areas with your target audience through your survey questions.

You need to be delving deep into the qualities and characteristics that your target audience associates with your brand, how it makes them feel, how they would best describe it and get a better understanding of the types of experiences they've had.

With this in mind, you may want to start with a question that assesses their levels of brand awareness, and how that competes with that of your competitors. A suitable question could include:

Which of the following brands have you heard of? (Select all that apply)
  • Competitor 1
  • Competitor 2
  • Competitor 3
  • Competitor 4
  • Our brand

To find out more about what your target audience associates with your brand, you may want to ask questions such as:

When you think of our brand, what comes to mind first?
Which of the following words best describe our brand?
  • Strong
  • Safe
  • Reliable
  • Quality
  • None of these

To delve into how your brand makes them feel, you might want to consider asking them the following:

What kind of feelings do you experience when you think of our brand?
How would you describe your level of emotional attachment to our brand? (rating your answer from 'strongly attached' to 'totally unattached'.

You may then decide to use a couple of open-ended questions to get a better feel for your target audience's understanding of your brand, through questions such as:

Which three words would you use to describe our brand?
How would you describe our brand to a friend?

Finally, to get a better idea about your target audience's experience of your brand and how positive or negative an experience that has been, you may want to consider using questions such as:

How would you describe your last experience with our brand?
Which words best describe your last experience with our brand? (selecting your answer on a scale from 'extremely enjoyable' to 'uninspiring'
Ask the right branding survey questions
Market survey template

Brand Survey Templates

With the wide range of different brand surveys in existence and questions you could potentially use, it can sometimes be challenging to know where to begin. That's why we've created a fully customised range of survey templates, to help get you started.

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