In part one of this series, I discussed how branding can subconsciously influence how we feel about companies, and ultimately influence who we choice to partner with. I ended the article by stating quite simply the more well branded a company is the more conversions they will have. In part 2, I want to show you some data that backs this up.
82% of consumers will select a brand that they’re already familiar with in search results
This is huge. The sample size of this study is admittedly on the small-ish side, but I think the point is relatively self-evident. If I get to a search page for something I need (I’m ready to convert) and I see three companies, one I’ve heard positive things about for years (Level 2 on the branding ladder), one I kind of vaguely recognize but don’t know that much about (Level 1), and the other I’ve never heard of until this moment (Level 0). Which one am I going to be more likely to choose? I won’t patronize you by answering. You get the idea.
It is also proven that utilizing tactics like digital display ads to help brand your company in the mind of your target audience helps increase organic search, direct traffic, and the performance of other tactics like search engine marketing year over year.
The problem is a lot of companies think their brands are Level 3’s and 2’s because “Hey, just ask my kids who the best pest control company in town is, amiright?”. When really in the mind of the average consumer they are a Level 0. Or an even worse scenario, that business doesn’t even care how their brand is perceived by the average customer before they are ready to convert, likely due to them not properly being educated about the important of a comprehensive marketing plan, which is crippling their conversion rate.
Tactics like digital display, digital video, and the like can help. More traditional advertising can be effective as well but I am always hesitant to recommend investing a significant amount of dollars into advertising that does not provide robust data to help with key insights and continual optimization, which TV, radio and billboard does not provide very much of.
To get even more bang for your buck with your digital display spend, you can also advertise directly on a highly trusted website. This is proven to help you climb the branding ladder more quickly and see your year over year analytics increase even faster for being associated with an already credible brand. Something we like to call the “Halo Effect”. Easiest way to sum this up is it is as a lot more valuable for you to be on a website like AL.com than freegames.com/blogspot. See here for supporting study that discusses this concept.
So what does this all mean? Well at the end of the day, if you don’t invest in branding tactics, you are going to lose. You think you are saving money by skipping the branding part but really what you are not investing in is conversions. The less people who are comfortable, trust, or like your brand before they get to the consideration or conversion stage of the buying process, the less people who will convert, plain and simple.
We need to start challenging business leaders, marketing directors, etc. to think about just how far up the brand ladder they are, and how we can help them climb that ladder within their category. If your clients really care about maximizing conversions, they are going to invest in smart strategic branding tactics that are proven to increase these conversions over time.
If you have any questions on this topic or would like to hear how Alabama Media Group can help you maximize conversions, please feel free to reach out. We would love to help!