Brand Awareness Trackers: How to Measure Brand Recognition Over Time

This blog post covers what brand awareness trackers are, what the objectives and approach might be, and the results you can expect to receive.

Brand Awareness Trackers: How to Measure Brand Recognition Over Time

Pop quiz! Do you know what percent of your target audience is aware of your brand, products, or services?

It's okay, not many people do. After all, this metric can look like a stock’s value on Wall Street that constantly rises and falls for most brands.

However, it’s still critical to measure the awareness of your brand- especially at regular intervals for an apples-to-apples comparison. 

If the awareness of your brand is floundering, your business is surely in trouble.

This is where a brand awareness tracker makes sense. Keep reading to learn more.

Not quite ready to start tracking your brand awareness? Learn more about positioning your brand for success.


✋ Before Getting Started with Brand Awareness Tracking...

The first step to a successful brand awareness tracking study is establishing a baseline of awareness among your target audience. 

With this benchmark, your organization can take actions to increase awareness such as executing new marketing campaigns. 

After you have a baseline and plans to improve awareness, you can start measuring the impact of your initiatives over time. 

This creates a feedback loop that helps your brand make the right decisions to optimize awareness among those that matter.

Now, let’s dive into the definition of brand awareness tracking. 

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What is a Brand Awareness Tracker?

A brand awareness tracker is a type of market research study often used to help a business understand how many of its target customers are familiar with the brand, products, or services.

As we covered earlier, an initial survey serves as a benchmark for future waves of the research. This is where the true value of a brand awareness tracker comes in. 

Brands can easily track important metrics such as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) annually, monthly, or even continuously. 

Popular KPIs brands can measure overtime include:

  • Awareness
  • Perception
  • Usage
  • Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  • Competitor comparisons 

Brand awareness trackers are also often directly connected with marketing and advertising campaigns that were designed to boost awareness or perception. 

They can show the relative impact of campaigns if the same target audience is surveyed that consumed the ads.

Below our market research company shares a real-world case study of a brand awareness tracking study we completed with a consumer packaged goods company. 

It will give you more insight into how this type of market research is conducted.

A brand awareness tracker is a type of market research study often used to help a business understand how many of its target customers are familiar with the brand, products, or services.


Objectives of the Brand Awareness Tracker

A marketing firm in Chicago, IL partnered with Drive Research to conduct a market research study for a dairy product brand.

The main goals of the market research project included measuring:

  • Unaided and aided awareness
  • Perception of the dairy product
  • Competitive awareness and perceptions
  • Decision-making process when buying dairy products

These and other secondary objectives were addressed in the brand awareness tracker.


Approach to the Brand Awareness Tracker

To address the objectives for the marketing firm and the end client, Drive Research recommended the following market research approach.

This included a quantitative online survey among consumers within the U.S. geography.

Before starting the study, a previous wave of the study was revisited to understand how key performance indicators (KPIs) may have shifted.

Details of the Brand Awareness Tracker

  • Respondents were a census representative mix of consumers who have at least some degree of decision-making for groceries in their household. Responses were proportionally balanced based on age, gender, ethnicity, and region.
  • The survey was blinded to all respondents. This meant respondents did not know it was sponsored by the dairy product company when starting the survey.
  • The online survey took an average of 5 minutes to complete and included 24 questions. 
  • The survey received 1,017 responses.
  • Fieldwork for the survey began on April 16 and lasted until April 27, 2021.

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Brand Awareness Tracker Questions

A brand awareness tracker includes many questions designed to measure specific Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). 

There are several standard KPIs that were used in this particular survey. These included:

  1. Unaided Awareness - This is an open-ended question to see what brands consumers know top-of-mind.
  2. Aided Awareness - This is a question that provides a list of brands for the respondent to select from.
  3. Brand Perception - Showing brands the respondent is aware of, this question captures positive, neutral, or negative attitudes towards each brand.
  4. Word Associations - This question can be asked as a long list of brand attributes or via semantic differential in which respondents pick a point between two opposite attributes that best describe the brand.
  5. Brand Usage - This question asks respondents which brands they have recently purchased or used.
  6. Net Promoter Score (NPS) - This market research staple asks respondents how likely they are to recommend a brand, then classifies them as a Promoter, Passive, or Detractor of the brand. 

Need more clarity on aided awareness versus unaided awareness? Check out this post for an in-depth look.


Outcomes of the Brand Awareness Tracker

As a brand awareness tracker, the results helped serve as a measurement and benchmark for an advertising campaign for the brand. 

The detailed findings from the survey outlined in a market research report remain confidential with the marketing firm and the dairy product client.

The market research answered the following research objectives:

  1. What is the top-of-mind awareness of the brand?
  2. What is the awareness of the brand name text and packaging?
  3. What is the perception of the brand and competitors?
  4. What are the top word associations with the brand?
  5. How do consumers purchase similar products?
  6. What is the usage of the brand and competitors?
  7. How likely are consumers to recommend the brand?

The topline research report included a background and methodology, an executive summary of key takeaways, and links to several online portals with results question-by-question. 

Delivered in addition to the report was an Excel cross-tabulation banner file breaking the data down into key segments, including by wave of the tracker.


Conduct Brand Awareness Trackers with Drive Research

Drive Research is a national market research company serving all industries and organization types.

Our experts are no stranger to brand awareness tracker studies, with many years of experience helping clients measure and take action for their business.

Interested in learning in receiving a proposal or quote for a brand awareness tracking survey? Contact our team today!

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at info@driveresearch.com
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040

tim gell - about the author

Tim Gell

As a Research Analyst, Tim is involved in every stage of a market research project for our clients. He first developed an interest in market research while studying at Binghamton University based on its marriage of business, statistics, and psychology. 

Learn more about Tim, here.


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