Brand research

What is brand research?

We need a strong, in-depth understanding of our target audience to develop a brand that will compel our customers to enthusiastically choose it over all the other options available to them.

Brand research is effectively doing your due diligence when it comes to your brand. More formally, it is research that is specifically carried out to assist with the creation, development, strengthening and ongoing management of brands.

At its heart, brand research is about building deep understanding of your customers and potential customers, and answering key questions such as:

  • Who are they?
  • How do they behave in your category - what do they choose, how do they make their decisions?
  • What are their needs and motivations when it comes to your category?
  • What do they think of your brand?
  • What makes your customers choose your brand over your competitors?
  • Why aren't non-customers choosing your brand?

Above all, brand research is a powerful tool that, when applied with judgment and discernment, can be an invaluable investment in the future of your brand.

For more information, you may like our blogs, Brand research is too expensive, right?, and Finding the insight through brand research.

Brand research will deliver accuracy and efficiency. It can help you in the planning phases of any brand development or strategic marketing project. It will ensure you accurately target your brand or marketing investment by helping you understand the needs and requirements of your target audience, and exactly how your organisation can help your audience solve a particular challenge.

At BrandMatters, we love to solve complex brand challenges for our clients, and understanding your audience is a central element in being able to achieve this. Following are the brand research services we offer.

Desk research

To develop a thorough understanding of your business, we turn to your existing data first. There is significant value in reviewing, rediscovering, synthesising and distilling the wealth of information that already exists. Doing this with objectivity and specific objectives in mind can uncover surprisingly rich and actionable insights.

Where possible, we review and synthesise business and brand strategies, marketing plans and campaigns, research reports, surveys, competitor analysis, market data, sales reports, employee surveys, brand health monitors and more. For some tips on desk research materials, read our blogs, 4 free sources of marketing research, and #1 tip for cost-effective brand research. You can also download our Guide to Brand Research.

Stakeholder depth interviews

Stakeholder depth interviews are a powerful tool to engage with senior and other key stakeholders in your business. They allow us to delve into the driving forces behind the project and tap into the vision and passions of these people. They encourage open, free exchange of information and allow us to cover sensitive and confidential topics. BrandMatters creates tailored discussion guides, and interviews typically run from 30-60 minutes, either in person or over the phone. We use the insights gleaned to feed into the development of your brand.

Brand research - qualitative & quantitative

Brand research can help answer key questions about your category, customers, employees, stakeholders and brand - and deliver powerful brand insights which enable growth.

BrandMatters has extensive experience in designing and executing bespoke qualitative and quantitative studies and extracting powerful insights to guide brand development.

Qualitative research can include in-depth interviews and focus groups. Quantitative research can include online surveys, telephone surveys and personal surveys. Talk to us about how we can design a cost-effective research program for your brand.

Brand tracking

Brand tracking is periodic or continuous research to monitor an advertising campaign or a brand's performance over time, using measures such as brand awareness, brand preference, and product usage. The ability to track your brand's performance and health before, during and after its launch or relaunch or promotional activity is becoming more and more important for marketers, as business owners and stakeholders require evidence of return on investment for these marketing initiatives.

BrandMatters can design and implement a brand tracking program for your brand, and extract insights that will help you tweak your ongoing brand management to achieve optimal results. As an added advantage, we have a normative database of over 14,000 business owners and decision makers that can help you understand just how well your brand is performing within the B2B context. Without norms, knowing what your brand score means is difficult. With norms to act as a numeric guideline, you have the context you need to interpret your survey results and set brand objectives.

Brand insights & recommendations

At the conclusion of the brand research, our researchers and strategists review all the information we have discovered and distil it into a set of powerful insights and recommendations. These insights lay the foundation for the development of your brand. We develop and deliver a written brand insights report, and present our findings to you and your key project stakeholders in an interactive session.

Understanding your customer is just as important for B2B brands as it is for B2C brands. A tailored research approach is needed to cater for the different dynamics and requirements of B2B and B2C markets. Here's a quick summary of how B2B differs from B2C research:

  • Multiple decision makers involved: The B2B buying cycle is often more complex and involves multiple parties who have varied interests, responsibilities, and levels of influence. This means that it is important that the research explores and understands all viewpoints.
  • Sample size: A smaller number of respondents are typically involved in B2B quantitative research as the population size of the target audience of interest is often quite small to begin with.
  • Unique respondents: The target audiences for B2B studies are often harder-to-reach, time-pressed, senior professionals, who are geographically dispersed.
  • In-depth telephone interviews are commonly used (especially when client lists are available), as they can be more suitable for busy schedules, less costly compared to face-to-face meetings, and a good alternative when focus groups are not a realistic option for some respondents who are in competition with one another.

Read more about B2B branding

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