4 Critical Audiences for a Brand Positioning Study

3 Critical Audiences for a Brand Positioning Study

Are you looking to enhance your brand’s marketing communication materials to be more well-received by your target audience?

Maybe you are unsure if the direction your organization is headed will make your brand stand out in your industry?

Or is it time to update your logo or packaging for a fresh new look?

A brand positioning study is the answer to solving these business objectives as it is a popular type of market research methodology for those looking to reposition their organization and improve ROI.

Below our market research company will outline how to leverage a brand positioning survey by uncovering how these audiences perceive your organization.

1. Surveying Employees

If you are looking to conduct a brand positioning study a great place to start is surveying your employees.

Think beyond employee satisfaction surveys, and more so asking your team to share their perception of the organization and brand.

A brand positioning research company will create a custom survey asking your employees to answer questions such as:

  • How would you describe our brand?
  • How do you believe our brand is perceived by the market?
  • What brand value resonates with you the most?
  • What problems does our brand solve?
  • How is our brand prices compared to the market?
  • Do customers receive a good value when they buy from our brand?
  • Where would you like our company to go in the next 5 years?

We always recommend using a third party for employee surveys.

These professionals specialize in employee surveys and craft unbiased survey questions that provide a more accurate assessment.

From our experience, employees are more honest knowing their feedback is anonymous and confidential.

Interested in learning more? Here are the top 5 advantages of employee surveys.

💡 The Key Takeaway: Promoting a cohesive brand story starts from within. Utilize an employee survey as part of brand positioning market research to learn more about perceptions, core values, proposition statements, and more.

2. Measure the Perception of Company Executives

If you are a larger company, it is likely you have a board of directors, leadership, or executive team responsible for creating a company-wide culture.

This is a great resource for your brand positioning study as this team decides the best route and brand message for your organization.

Rather than a short survey, our brand positioning research company recommends taking the extra step to conduct 30 to 60-minute individual in-depth interviews or executive interviews with each member of your leadership team.

This interview can take place in person or over the phone between a team member and the research interviewer.

While questions may be repeated from the employee survey, the research interviewer would use a discussion guide to ask your board or directors additional questions such as:

  • What are the core values of our brand?
  • What is the brand’s value proposition?
  • Does our tagline appropriately represent our brand’s mission?
  • Who are the main stakeholders of our brand?
  • Who is responsible for managing the brand of our company?

Once the results come back from the employee survey and the leadership team's in-depth interviews, it is important to compare and contrast the results.

Overall, is there a universal sentiment across all answers?

Or is there a major difference between how your leadership team perceives your brand vs. how your employees view your brand?

It is easy to assume both parties will be on the same page but the results from these studies might surprise you. 

💡 The Key Takeaway: Employees of all levels frequently hold many different views on a company and brand. It is important to have a strong aligned brand perception internally, before assuming it will be perceived the same externally.

3. Surveying Customers for Brand Perception

Up next? Your customers. This is a great resource to understand the awareness and word association around your brand from the people who have used your product or service.

For this type of audience, consider a two-tiered hybrid research approach for your brand perception study.

A hybrid market research study involves conducting both qualitative research methods for exploring and quantitative research methods for measuring.

This all-encompassing approach allows for intimate feedback from a small set of participants as well as a reliable, higher degree of data.

In most cases, a multi-component brand perception study involves focus groups and an online customer survey.

Customer Focus groups

As a qualitative market research methodology, focus groups offer a lot of detailed context around your brand.

Focus groups allow for an open dialogue among customers to share their perceptions of your brand and why they choose to do business with you.

Additionally, this type of research is specifically helpful for organizations looking to rebrand with an updated logo or company colors.

At a focus group facility, it is easy to display your existing or new logo.

Here, customers are asked to provide feedback such as:

  • Why they do or do not like the logo
  • If the logo accurately represents your brand
  • If the logo is easily recognizable

...and plenty more.

Online Customer Surveys

Online surveys are a powerful quantitative market research methodology, especially for brand positioning studies.

It is a simple and cost-effective way to obtain feedback from your customers.

With an excel spreadsheet of existing customer emails, an online survey company can easily send an email invitation prompting customers to complete an online survey regarding your company and brand.

The customer survey will likely consist of questions such as:

  • What words best describe our brand?
  • Why did you buy from our brand? Will you buy from our brand again?
  • Where did you see our brand for the first time?
  • How do you feel when you use our brand?
  • Do you get a fair value from our brand?
  • Does our brand deliver on the services we promise?

While there is no definitive order to which methodology should be conducted first, our brand positioning market research company often recommends qual before quant if the resources allow for it.

💡 The Key Takeaway: One of the most valuable audiences for a brand positioning study is your customers. For this reason, it is valuable to conduct both focus groups and online surveys to achieve the most in-depth feedback possible.

4. Brand Perception of Non-Customers

Last but certainly not least, all brand perception research should include feedback from those of the general public or non-customers.

This feedback showcases how your brand is perceived by a mass audience as a whole and not skewed by customers who are already knowledgeable of your organization.

This is a great resource to understand why people are not buying from your brand or why your brand has a negative perception.

Receiving feedback from your target market as part of a brand perception study can be conducted in a variety of methodologies such as online surveys, phone surveys, or focus groups.

Regardless of the type of method, our research company recommends, the overarching goal is to get inside the minds of non-buyers.

To best determine what is deterring people from buying from your brand, ask questions like:

  • What do you know about this brand?
  • How would you describe this brand?
  • What would you expect to pay for this brand?
  • How does this brand compare to competitors?
  • Would you consider buying from this brand? Why or why not?

💡 The Key Takeaway: Gaining non-customer feedback shows your brand why target buyers aren't currently purchasing from your organization, and why they are working with competitors.

Recommended Reading: How to Survey Non-Customers

How to Use Brand Perception Study Results

Here is where the fun begins.

Once you have studied employees, customers, and the general public to understand their perception of your brand, it is time to compare and contrast the results. How aligned or misaligned is your brand’s perception from these differing audiences?

For example, if your brand’s highest value is advertised as the product’s quality, but the general public does not perceive it as a quality product, you are not going to want to hang your hat on this.

Or say your executive team believes your product is low-cost, but customers view it as a more expensive product compared to others on the market, consider rebranding as a more luxury product.

💡 The Key Takeaway: To properly rebrand, it is important to have an aligned strategy where all of these stakeholders share the same point of view and thoughts. Here, you will want to showcase the value of your brand that is most common across all audiences.

Contact Our Brand Positioning Research Company

Drive Research is a national market research company specializing in brand positioning studies. Our team has the knowledge and tools to design both qualitative and quantitative research studies for all business types and sectors.

Reach out through any of the four ways below to learn more.

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at [email protected]
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040

emily carroll about the author

Emily Carroll

A SUNY Cortland graduate, Emily has taken her passion for social and content marketing to Drive Research as the Marketing Manager. She has earned certificates for both Google Analytics and Google AdWords.

Learn more about Emily, here.

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