Brand equity measurement needs to come out of the box

Everything we do should drive consumer action and the only way to do that is to track brand equity effectively and transparently. Farid Jeeawody, Partner at Hall & Partners, explains. 

What gets measured matters but all too often, the measurement process can be mysterious. Marketers don’t always know what assumptions have been made or why certain generic metrics have chosen.

In such circumstances, it can require a leap of faith to believe that the marketing dashboard is the guiding light that it should be. Marketers need to feel confident that what they’re tracking relates to their goals or category.

The truth is that measurement is as much an art as it is a science. In recent years, however, equity measurement has become too science-based, using one-size fits all models that don’t reflect the nuances of different brands and categories. As a result, many brands can no longer answer their fundamental questions: where are they now, and where do they want to be?

Rather than rely on closed-box equity models, marketing scientists need the creative freedom to design, collect and interpret data in a way that’s adapted to each brand. They need to build custom models that can predict and simulate scenarios so that brand managers can find out exactly what they need to know. This approach, rooted in proven principles, reveals uncommon insights that drive brand growth. The result is a proven growth framework powered by metrics tailored to your brand and category.

We believe that without a bespoke approach, brand metrics become a matter of belief.
Marketing is a process of active management, guided by data and insight to help brands make smarter decisions. That can only work if everyone trusts the data and feels it’s relevant.

Building a bespoke brand equity model

To measure brand growth, we apply proven principles together with the latest brand, behavioural and social science thinking. Our Brand Growth Framework is based around four pillars of a person’s experience of a brand. What people SEE, FEEL, THINK, and DO. Rather than a one-size fits all model, we tailor specific metrics in each area around the goals of each brand and the nature of its category.

Brand Growth is driven by what people SEE, FEEL, THINK, and DO.

The nature of this framework means undertaking lots of discovery about each brand and category to ensure that we understand brand goals. Design and Align workshops enable us to match our measures to strategy so that what’s being benchmarked actually matters.

This delivers three key benefits:

Firstly, the metrics are bespoke and tailored to each brand and category. A simple example is the supermarket category, because while value, quality and emotional connection are important across the category, different brands can focus on different territories within these three pillars. By capturing both core category and tailored brand attributes, we can guide clients on what drives behaviour at both a category and brand level.

Secondly, it enables us to diagnose and build equity rather than just measure it. For example, research shows that when we associate a brand with strong positive emotions consumers are more likely to choose it automatically. Such brands can often command a price premium and have greater longevity.

We can measure Emotional Brand Connection using a range of implicit, explicit and diagnostic approaches. Using dimensions such as shared values, nostalgia, comfort, indulgence helps provide real insight into how to grow emotional connection.

Patagonia, for example, is a brand that connects with consumers who are passionate about the outdoors by campaigning for wild spaces, sometimes aggressively and publicly. Environmentalists have a sense that it’s on their side and are proud to be associated with it.

Finally, applying our clear Brand Growth Framework provides a simple common language, ensuring everyone – whether they are brand, experience, comms – thinks about the business in the same way. It moves the discussion from metrics to strategies by making the numbers relevant. It links brand to business performance by connecting insights across brand, comms and experience.

This simple common language can ultimately become part of every interaction, keeping the whole team focused on the opportunities for growth.

Building a successful brand to last

Brand metrics should be a key tool in the modern marketers’ toolkit, but they’ll only deliver if they are firmly embedded in the whole process. By creating a common language for discussion of growth opportunities SEE, FEEL, THINK, DO provides a framework for success that is bespoke to your brand.

Our approach acknowledges the bespoke challenges of each brand. It’s not a closed box but a cohesive set of the brand health metrics that matter. It acknowledges the fact that different brands work in different ways.

In short, it helps us translate uncommon insights into strategies for action for any brand or category.

How can a bespoke equity model can grow my brand?

Farid Jeeawody
Farid Jeeawody
Hall & Partners

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