I recently heard an account of a client that had stopped their brand tracking efforts “because the numbers never changed.” This particular client was continuing communications and customer experience tracking, but their brand tracking work was no longer being funded. This struck me as a wasted opportunity to identify the strategic business activation that brand tracking provides.
Part of the challenge with brand tracking is that the instrument itself becomes bloated or ineffectual over time, as fast-moving markets render it redundant. That’s why it is important to conduct a questionnaire “tune-up” on a regular basis to ensure that the issues in the survey maintain their relevance. Additionally, conducting immersive qualitative sessions with target segments provides “the voice of the customer” behind the numbers. I’ve never met a senior executive who did not appreciate hearing these types of customer stories that help ensure brand trackers continue to be valued throughout the organization.
What long-term brand trackers do best is determine what type of recalibration is necessary for brand growth, based on customers’ data and their stories. For example:
- An energy client pivoted their corporate positioning around emergency shutoffs to include resource information if a shutoff occurred
- A technology provider altered their communications and marketing spend to focus on converting higher-order-needs to purchase
- A manufacturer of home durables re-balanced their communications to focus on re-sale versus installation and usage
- A major cruise line re-imagined their entire customer experience based on brand goals
What long-term brand trackers do best is determine what type of recalibration is necessary for brand growth, based on customers’ data and their stories.”
The list of how brand trackers impact business and marketing strategy really is endless. This is only possible when a brand team actively monitors the tracker to ensure the questions answer, “what will meet the needs of customers in the next business cycle?” This is how brand trackers deliver insights that are relevant, compelling, and a source of brand recalibration.
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