Your brand is one of the most important components of your business. If you don’t understand how it is positioned, your marketing can get out of whack. A Brand Audit as described in this post is a valuable tool to ensure future performance.
Originally posted on Crazy about your brand:
Written by Chipo Mapungwana
A brand audit is a thorough examination of a brand’s current position in an industry compared to its competitors and the examination of its effectiveness.
Before deciding to conducting a brand audit, ask yourself these questions
- How well is your business’ current brand strategy is working?
- What are your company’s established resource strengths and weaknesses?
- What are your external opportunities and threats?
- How competitive are your prices and costs?
- How strong is your business’ competitive position in comparison to its competitors?
- What strategic issues are facing your business?
The main goals of a Brand audit are:
- To uncover your business’ resource strengths, deficiencies, best market opportunities, outside threats, future profitability, and competitive standing in comparison to existing competitors.
- To establishes the strategic elements needed to improve brand position and competitive capabilities within the industry.
- To examines whether your business’ share of the market is increasing, decreasing, or stable.
- To determine if your company’s margin of profit is improving, decreasing, and how much it is in comparison to the profit margin of established competitors.
- To investigate trends in your business’ net profits, the return on existing investments, and your established economic value.
- To determine whether or not your business’ entire financial strength and credit rating is improving or getting worse.
- To assess your business’ image and reputation with its customers.
- To determine whether or not your business is perceived as an industry leader in technology, offering product or service innovations, customer service, among other relevant issues that customers use to decide on a brand of preference.
Elements of a Brand Audit
Step One: Brand Audit Strategy
- Sales force or sales channel
- Current customers
- Prospective customers
- Past customers
- Trade press
- Consumer press
- Business press
- Industry and financial analysts
- Shareholders and investors
- Business and community leaders
- Influencers and government regulators
The brand audit involves the use of both secondary and primary research, and uses both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies, including interviews and online surveys.
The brand audit helps companies build their brand from the inside out.
Step Two: The View from the Inside Out
Many brands fail to reach their full potential because they are not fully understood or supported by important internal audiences. So before undertaking any outside marketing research with consumers, it’s critical to first look at the brand from the inside out.
- Customer perception
- Product / Service differentiation
- Business Objectives
- Strengths and Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats
- Financial performance
Products and Services
- Important characteristics of products and services
- Key benefits, Advantages and disadvantages of products and services
- Pricing compared to the competition
- New products to be launched
- Company Focus/Core competencies
- Brand Identity
- Customer Information
- Customer Service/Sales