Share of Search is a metric that measures how often your brand is searched for in major search engines compared to other brands in your segment. This gives a good indication of how your brand measures up to your competition and how interesting your brand is to the population over time. Share of search has been proven to have a strong correlation to market share so don't miss out on tracking it!
In modern marketing, being able to confidently prove your ROI or impact on your marketing objective is crucial. Digital marketing strategies and technology has dramatically increased our ability to measure everything from impressions to completed purchases and beyond. However, one aspect of marketing that is still quite difficult to measure is how campaigns affect the strength of your brand.
For most marketers, building a strong brand is a major objective as we all know that a strong brand will result in more revenue, more profit and bigger marketing budgets. Therefore, most marketing teams also dedicate significant parts of their budget to awareness campaigns, but many also struggle to measure and evaluate their campaign's impact on this specific objective.
Let's look at a few common ways of measuring campaign impact on brand awareness and why Share of Search should be added to your set of tools.
The most common way of measuring the effect of a campaign on brand awareness is by conducting traditional surveys before and after its launch. This is usually first done by asking your target audience open-ended questions about which brands in your segment they know about, what their perception of the brands are etc before your campaign is launched. After your campaign has ended, you then repeat the same process and compare the results to see what effect your campaign had.
This is a proven method of measuring brand awareness, but there are a few problems with this method. For one, it's time-consuming and costly. You generally need a third party to recruit a panel, conduct the survey, compile the results etc and then to repeat the same process again.
Also, you only get a snapshot of the current situation each time you conduct such a survey. Perhaps you're interested in knowing if the brand stuck to your audience minds or if it was quickly forgotten about? Well, then you have to conduct another survey a few months later.
Using share of search deals with a lot of these problems and is a great addition to your campaign reporting.
As Share of Search is based on how much your brand is searched for in major search engines, it comes with a few very interesting upsides that traditional survey's just can't provide.
For one you can get the results instantly and in real-time. There is no delay in getting information from Google or other search engines, so if you want to follow up on your Share of Search daily (although we don't really recommend that).
Generating your Share of Search is also very cheap (or even free) as there's no need to actively recruit a panel or use expensive consultant hours to conduct interviews. This means you can put more money towards your campaign and less on performance evaluation.
If you want to know your brand's share of search, simply generate it below:
When you start using Share of Search, we suggest to use it as an ongoing KPI in your business. It's not something you look at once at the end of a campaign and then forget about. Make sure to track it at least monthly, make note of the trends and analyse what impacts it and not. However, as Share of Search can give you historical data for your brand you don't have to feel bad if you're late to the party. You can get results and analyse results from years back!
Next time you launch a major brand awareness campaign, make sure to also take note of what your Share of Search value was at the time. Then follow up during the campaign if you can see your searches increasing in relation to your competitors. Hopefully, with a successful campaign, you'll see that your brand gets more and more searches in relation to other brands, proving that your brand is not only becoming more known, but also more interesting and getting more attention compared to your competitors than before your campaign started.
Unfortunately, there is no "catch all" solution when it comes to brand awareness measurement and share of search comes with its own unique challenges.
For one, Share of Search doesn't say anything about the actual number of searches as it only describes your share of the total searches in a segment. This means that the number of searches for your brand can decrease while your Share of Search increases. This makes it impossible to equate Share of Search with overall awareness. However, it does equate to your brand getting more interest compared to other brands in the same segment, which you can argue to be even more important depending on your situation.
Moreover, Share of Search doesn't give you any insight into why your brand was searched for. For example, major scandals will often increase a brand's Share of Search but for all the wrong reasons.
In conclusion, Share of Search is a valuable metric for measuring the strength of a brand in relation to its competitors. It provides real-time and cost-effective results, compared to traditional surveys. While Share of Search has its limitations, it can provide valuable insights into the impact of a marketing campaign on brand awareness and interest.
By tracking Share of Search regularly and in relation to campaign performance, businesses can better understand their brand's position in the market. However, it should not be relied upon solely, and traditional methods should still be used to gain a complete understanding of brand awareness.