Definition of 'Brand Awareness' The likelihood that consumers recognize the existence and availability of a company's product or service. Creating brand awareness is one of the key steps in promoting a product Brand Awareness is the extent to which a brand is recognized by potential customers, and is correctly associated with a particular product. Expressed usually as a percentage of target market, brand awareness is the primary goal of advertising in the early months or years of a product's introduction.
Brand awareness is the extent to which the consumer associates the brand with the product he desires to buy. It is the brand recall and the brand recognition of the company to the consumers. Brand recall is the ability of the consumer to recollect the brand with reference to the product where as brand recognition is the potential of the consumer to retrieve the past knowledge of the brand when enquired about the brand or shown an image of the brand logo.
Brand awareness is an essential part of brand development which helps the brand to stand out from the others in this monopolistically competitive market Importance "Awareness, attitudes, and usage (AAU) metrics relate closely to what has been called the Hierarchy of Effects, an assumption that customers progress through sequential stages from lack of awareness, through initial purchase of a product, to brand loyalty. " In total, these AAU metrics allow companies to track trends in customer knowledge and attitudes.  Brand awareness plays a major role in a consumer’s buying decision process.
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The knowledge of an acquaintance or friend having used the product in the past or a high recognition of the product through constant advertisements and associations coaxes the person to make his decision in the favour of the brand. The eventual goal of most businesses is to make profits and increase sales. Businesses intend to increase their consumer pool and encourage repeat purchases. Apple is a brilliant example of how there is a very high recognition of the brand logo and high anticipation of a new product being released by the company.
An iPod is the first thing that pops into our minds when we think of purchasing an mp3 player. iPod is used as a replaceable noun to describe an mp3 player. Finally, high brand awareness about a product suggests that the brand is easily recognizable and accepted by the market in a way that the brand is differentiated from similar products and other competitors. Brand building also helps in improving brand loyalty Brand awareness is an important way of promoting commodity-related products. This is because for these products, there are very few factors that differentiate one product from its competitors.
Therefore, the product that maintains the highest brand awareness compared to its competitors will usually get the most sales. In the study "Effects of Brand Awareness on Choice for a Common Repeat Purchase-Product" prepared by Wayne D. Hoyer and Steven P. Brown, published by the University of Chicago Press in the journal "Journal of Consumer Research Vol. 17,No. 2(sep. ,1990) gives an abstract that Results of a controlled experiment on the role of brand awareness in the consumer choice process showed that brand awareness was a dominant choice heuristic among awareness-group subjects.
Subjects with no brand awareness tended to sample more brands and selected the high-quality brand on the final choice significantly more often than those with brand awareness. Thus, when quality differences exist among competing brands, consumers may "pay a price" for employing simple choice heuristics such as brand awareness in the interest of economizing time and effort. However, building brand awareness is a viable strategy for advertising aimed at increasing brand-choice probabilities.
In their research ,Brand awareness is defined as a rudimentary level of brand knowledge involving,at the least, recognition of a brand name. Awareness represents lowest end of continuum of brand knowledge that ranges from simple recognition of the brand name to highly developed cognitive structure based on detailed information. Recognition is taken here to be the process of perceiving a brand as previously encountered(Mandler 1980). Thus the distinction between awareness and recognition is a subtle one,former denting a state of knowledge possessed by the consumer and the latter a cognitive process resulting from awareness.
According to Keller (2003) stated that Brand awareness can be referred to as the ability of a consumer to distinguish a brand under various conditions. Keller (2003) also noted that brand awareness is built and increased by familiarity with the brand as a result of repeated vulnerability which eventually leads to consumers experience with the brand. Consumer’s experience of a particular brand could either be by hearing, seeing, or thinking about it and this will help the brand to stick in their memory.
Brand awareness can be referred to as the degree of consumers’ familiarity with a brand. Aaker (1991) According to Aaker (1991 p. 62), there are three levels of brand awareness: * Brand recognition: It is the ability of consumers to identify a certain brand amongst other i. e. “aided recall”. Aided recall is a situation whereby a person is asked to identify a recognized brand name from a list of brands from the same product class. * Brand recall: This is a situation whereby a consumer is expected to name a brand in a product class.
It is also referred to as “unaided recall” as they are not given any clue from the product class. * Top of mind: This is referred to as the first brand that a consumer can recall amongst a given class of product. Many researchers have seen brand awareness as an element that plays a vital role in consumer’s choice of brand. Aaker (1991) prescribed some of the following factors as ways to achieve brand awareness: * Involve a slogan or jingle: a slogan is a visible feature of a brand. There can be a strong link between a slogan and a brand.
The slogan and jingle are powerful and can be a great change for a brand. * Be different and memorable: as a result of the similarity between product and their means of communication, product differentiation is important. * Symbol exposure: a known symbol will make it easier to recall and memorize a visible illustration of the brand. A logo that is connected to an existing brand or a developed brand will play a vital role in developing and keeping brand awareness. * Publicity: one of the most important ways to get publicity and create awareness is through advertisement. Event sponsorship: sponsorship of event can also help to create and maintain awareness. * Consider brand extension: one way to increase brand recall is to show the logo or name on the product and make the name popular. Example of this is coca-cola which is more publicized than the key product. * Using cue: packaging is one of the most significant cues to a brand due to the fact that it is what the purchaser sees when purchasing a product. If the product or brand is not known, the only means of contact to the brand or product is the package. Hankinson and Cowking 1993), indicates in order to achieve the brand acceptance, the relationship between the customer and brand – perception of customer to brand is needed. The customer’s psychological and physical needs and the brand’s symbolic values and functional attributes will be reflect by the strong relationship between customers the brand Brand awareness is essential in buying decision-making as it is important that consumers recall the brand in the context of a given specific product category, awareness increasing the probability that the brand will be a member of the consideration set.
Awareness also affects decisions about brands in the consideration set, even in the absence of any brand associations in consumers’ minds. In low involvement decision settings, a minimum level of brand awareness may be sufficient for the choice to be final. Awareness can also influence consumer decision making by affecting brand associations that form the brand image (Keller1998)
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