Monthly Archives: March 2023

Measuring Awareness

What is Awareness? “Awareness” is a measure of how well known your brand is in the market. It usually takes 6-7 times for a person to see or hear about the brand before the person registers it into long-term memory. This is why it’s necessary to communicate continually over time to build awareness. What Tactics Are Used to Build Awareness? Awareness should always be measured within your Target Customer group – not everybody in the market. Typically, awareness tactics are broad reaching – tactics include everything from traditional media like TV, magazines, newspaper, billboards, to direct mail sent to a broad audience, or “top of funnel” digital tactics like display ads. Other awareness tactics include sponsorships, conferences, trade shows and other events. How Do You Track Awareness? Surveys are a popular way to measure marketing awareness. You ask respondents if they are aware of your brand or product and if they have seen or heard any marketing messages. For smaller markets or companies, it can be difficult and expensive to acquire names and contact information to conduct a survey. In those cases, “impressions” is often a good proxy for awareness. “Impressions” are a measure of the total number of times your brand is seen by a target customer. Here is how we measure “Awareness” with our clients using impressions:
  • Create a list of all of your marketing tactics in the top row of an Excel sheet
  • In the first column, designate the time period (usually weeks or months)
  • Add several rows of time periods going out into the future
  • For each tactic in each time period, add the number of people (“impressions”) you know or believe saw your brand.
  • Here are some examples of tactics and how to count impressions
    • Digital Media: count the impressions
    • Trade shows/events: Count the number of people who visited your booth or attended a presentation.
    • Sponsor an event: Count the number of people who attend the event
    • Traditional media like TV, print or out-of-home, the vendor should provide impressions by time period (and whatever breakout you are buying)
Building brand awareness is a long-term effort and should be tracked for several periods.

Industry Research Step-By-Step

Industry research is a great tool to build lists and target the right people. Use this resource to help guide your research on an industry, and start a foundation for your marketing and sales.


Example: “Seafood Wholesalers”

  1. US gov NAICS database –
  2. Search the NAICS for “seafood” –
  3. Review the list and choose a few that you think match what you are looking for:
    1. Fish (except canned, packaged frozen) merchant wholesalers 424460
    2. Fresh fish merchant wholesalers 424460
    3. Fresh seafood merchant wholesalers 424460
  4. Review the description to confirm that these are the types of organizations you want.
  5. Go to the IBIS World (industry research firm) site:
  6. Search for “424460” to see if they have a report –
  7.  Go to Reference Solutions (this is a free database to look up companies that you can get to via a Cincinnati library card) –
  8.  On the left-hand side, choose Keyword/SIC/NAICS, choose Search all NAICS, and type in the NAICS code (424460) in the box
  9. Click on each of the results (they move to the “selected” section)
  10. Click “view results” (green button on the top right)
  11.  Click on “download” (in menu bar)
  12. Choose Excel, detailed results and “download records” (see attached file – it’s just a sample)
  13. Get feedback from sales and others internally to confirm that the NAICS and the list are correct
  14. Consider buying an industry report from a company like IBIS (mentioned in step 5

Download the example HERE