eCommerce has experienced remarkable growth over the last several years - and especially under the conditions of the Covid-19 pandemic that changed online shopping behaviors forever. With malls closed, businesses had to adapt quickly to ensure they could survive. Those who thought about building their eCommerce brand awareness on time coped very well with the situation. Those who did not, unfortunately, paid a high price for it. But why have many business owners neglected this step from the beginning?
The first problem is certainly insufficient understanding of two terms: brand awareness and brand recognition. Oh yes, although you may think that these two terms have the same meaning - you are wrong. Let's explain them briefly once and for all.
Brand recognition and brand awareness: What’s the difference?
If we think of building a brand as building a house, we have to start with setting up the foundation. In this case, that foundation is brand recognition. A good brand recognition strategy involves developing color palettes, logos, visual elements, and even a tone of voice that summarizes your brand personality. These are all elements that will further help you build brand awareness. On the other hand, brand awareness involves stronger, emotion-based connections between your company and your customer. To explain more simply, if you were asked to name a sportswear brand, what would be top of mind? The brand you immediately thought of has succeeded in its brand awareness efforts.
Sometimes all you need is a little bit of creativity
The vast majority of e-commerce startups and businesses think the consumer’s ability to recognize or recall a brand comes with a big price tag. However, even some of the hottest online brands in the world proved that developing eCommerce brand awareness doesn't have to be expensive. In this blog, we will reveal some tips that can help you a lot. The following are the top 8 ways you can build brand awareness without breaking the bank.
#1 Consider doing guest posts on other websites
When building awareness of your brand - numbers matter. So writing a guest article targeting blogs with high domain authority is definitely something you will need when striving to be seen or heard… well, almost anywhere.
Using guest blogging for building brand awareness and growing your customer base is one of the most efficient content marketing strategies for increasing brand awareness. Having more content on higher authority sites allows you to build your credibility as an expert in your niche and connect with audiences outside your target market.
The other key benefit of doing high-authority guest posts is building backlinks to your own blog and improving search rankings that will help you get more real organic traffic to your website. Like a cherry on top of a cake, this type of promotion of your brand does not require money. All you need is a little research to find guest posting sites, time (so you can gather all the information you need), and your ability to show expertise in a particular area.
#2 Take full advantage of online webinars
Although a webinar branding strategy requires a thorough analysis of your market, it represents a vital consideration for any business that wants to position its brand in a crowded market. Before you start making your content plan, you must have all the information on how your target market should look. The more you know about who they are, how they behave and what are their interests (and problems they want to solve), the more they’re going to respect your brand and follow your calls to action. This will certainly have a positive effect on raising awareness of your brand. If your webinar leads them to find a solution to their problem, they will likely remember your brand. Thus, if they remember your brand, can bring new sales and other tools available to boost eCommerce sales, such as systeme.io.
The good news is online webinars do not require heavy financial investment and are also quite convenient in the current time as most of the employees are working from home due to the pandemic. These are all things we should all take advantage of.
#3 Increase your eCommerce brand awareness on TikTok
Heard about TikTok? In case you’ve been hiding under a rock, TikTok isn’t just a place for teens to go viral. With over 2 billion downloads and over 1 billion monthly active users, the platform became an essential element in the marketing strategy of eCommerce brands all over the world.
Creating premium content that hooks viewers’ attention could go a long way in unleashing your brand’s creative side, while allowing users to build high-quality entertainment together.
Like in all good content, authenticity is crucial. If you focus on communicating your core brand messaging, your values, transparency, and potential value to the customer, using your TikTok business account can lead to an enormous boost in brand awareness. And there’s always a possibility of going viral if you do it right.
Of course, some things are easier said than done - and it is not always easy to measure engagement across multiple posts.
However, one of the best ways to grow your community on the platform (and do some social listening!) is to develop a good engagement rate on TikTok so that the algorithm can help you gain more visibility.
#4 Boost brand awareness through influencer marketing
Did you know 86% of marketers use influencer marketing campaigns to raise brand awareness? This does not happen by accident. Collaborating with an influencer to market your brand, eCommerce related products, or service to a targeted audience, gives you the opportunity to put your message across in a much stronger way compared to if you as a brand would say these things. Why is that so?
Word of mouth is the most powerful tool brands can use. And let’s face it, people trust online recommendations as much as they trust the opinions of friends and family members. Many influencers already have highly engaged audiences in a particular niche, their loyal followers who can be interested in your brand, because of their authority, knowledge, and expertise on a particular topic. Their followers respect and trust them — and, therefore, engage with their content constructively. That's where your brand gets a chance.
#5 Optimize your website for search engines
While it may seem that SEO optimization has nothing to do with brand awareness, we have to tell you they certainly work wonders together.
Uplifting your brand visibility on search engines, within the public that is interested in what your brand already offers, leads to higher chances of current and prospective consumers remembering your brand. It is also good to mention that optimizing your SEO to make your website’s content engaging and valuable is cost-effective compared to both digital and offline marketing strategies. Therefore, our advice is not to ignore the power of integrating your strategy for brand awareness through SEO.
#6 Expose your brand to an entirely new audience through podcasts
People are constantly looking for topics that interest them, and when you add some multitasking options such as cooking, working out or driving, it is certainly an enticing medium that your eCommerce brands should use for increasing brand awareness. Not only is it a good way to build closer relationships with your target audience and potential clients, but it will be much quicker to convert them because you already convinced them they can trust your brand.
There are three effective ways you could use to boost your eCommerce brand awareness:
- Starting your own podcast
- Appearing as a guest on someone else’s podcast
- Sponsoring a podcast in your niche
No matter which way you decide to go you can be sure podcasting is one of the best ways to boost your eCommerce brand awareness with very little funding involved.
#7 Launch affiliate marketing campaign to encourage other brands to promote your business
There’s no better and faster way of getting recognized by many potential buyers than through affiliate marketing! In a nutshell, it’s an advertising model that allows affiliates to promote your brand and its products in exchange for a commission when a customer purchases the offer through their ‘affiliate link.’ Accessing larger audience members who might previously have been unaware of your brand’s existence, while having your business endorsed by another brand (as long as you know how to find affiliates), is a win-win situation for both your eCommerce brand and the affiliate marketer.
Boosting your eCommerce brand awareness strategy is not an effortless task. It requires careful planning, persistent dedication, time, and a lot of hard work. However, the good news is that you don’t need to spend a fortune to build brand awareness these days. The cost-effective tactics mentioned above, combined with analytics and some creative thinking, could yield significant benefits for your brand in the long run.
Along with social media, blogging, podcasts, and various marketing campaigns, you have incredible opportunities to quickly grab attention from both your desired customer and competitors on the market. As long as your target buyers favor your brand over the rest, your eCommerce business is in good hands.
Snippet: These powerful tactics for boosting your eCommerce brand awareness, combined with analytics and some creative thinking, could yield significant benefits for your brand in the long run. The good news is you don’t need to spend a fortune to build brand awareness these days. Here’s how to do it right!
Author bio: David Morneau is the co-founder and CEO of inBeat, a hybrid micro-influencer marketing SAAS/agency that helps brands scale their marketing efforts. He has helped over 200 DTC brands to date.