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The Importance of Brand Recognition in a Fast-Changing Media Landscape

September 3rd, 2019   ||    by David Bloom

With the Internet of Things, social media, and OTT video changing how consumers and companies connect, the importance of brand recognition has never been higher. And it’s only going to become more so as audiences are deluged with more ways to occupy their attention, more voices clamoring for that attention, and more need to filter out all but the most relevant material.

Brand recognition gives a company a chance to not just be seen, but listened to and engaged with—it is a key currency in our cross-platform media age.

Through it all, TV advertising remains a powerful way to connect brands to fans. But increasingly, it must operate in concert with experiential, social, mobile, and online tools.

TV Ads: Brand-Building Champs

A significant TV advertising component is usually vital, allowing brands to connect to the largest audiences, despite the fracturing across platforms and viewing options.

Ad-supported video-on-demand companies such as Tubi, Xumo, Future Today, STIRR, and Pluto.TV are growing quickly, providing what looks like traditional linear TV with traditional advertising.

Traditional TV advertising is also undergoing a major update, thanks to the new broadcast standard ATSC 3.0. It will allow broadcasters to serve targeted ads, more video channels, and new data services. The local car dealer or grocery store will be able to offer digital coupons or other deals over the air. And they’ll know that TV ads are reaching the right audience, not just a big one.

Building Brand Recognition the New Way

To make sure they can thrive in a complex new era, smart companies are using traditional TV in concert with new tools to build enduring relationships with consumers.

Wendy’s, for instance, has built a massive social media audience (3.2 million followers on Twitter alone) for its cheeky, constantly engaged presence there. But it’s weaving that online presence with a steady and substantial TV buy, according to Yahoo.

Wendy’s competitor Burger King created a “50/50 menu” option in Sweden that lets people order a sandwich that might have traditional beef or chicken, or might have one of their plant-based alternatives, reported MarketingDive. The integrated campaign allowed Burger King to connect with younger, mobile-centric audiences while subtly conducting a huge marketing study.

Great Recent Brand-Building Campaigns

In the first half of 2019, we saw a string of successful brand-building campaigns, as detailed by MarketingDive. Taco Bell created a branded Palm Springs hotel getaway for its most loyal fans. Reservations sold out in two minutes, even though the promotion ran in Palm Springs’ sweltering August. A thoughtful Gillette TV ad challenging norms about modern masculinity set off a huge cultural discussion, injecting the brand into the #MeToo conversation.

Similarly, Nike waded into the National Anthem protests with an ad featuring former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Not incidentally, Nike share prices soared, according to CBS News, as it connected with a young, “woke” audience.

None of these campaigns just said, “Buy my product.” The brands behind the campaigns understand they’re building a long-term relationship with customers that transcends any specific purchase or quarterly result, standing out from the noise and distractions of this new media era. It’s why the importance of brand recognition is greater than ever.

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