Data-driven insights are an integral part of running digital campaigns. Metrics provide a snapshot of how well brand messaging is resonating with a target audience, enabling marketers to measure the impact of their strategy. Alignment is the goal, because it encourages audience engagement that will ultimately drive consumers toward conversion.
To gain the intel needed, most marketers will turn to metrics like impressions and click-throughs, but nowadays, it’s possible to look beyond these campaign metrics toward audience insights that will identify real impact. A tactic that marketers are leveraging to gain audience insights and identify the impact of their campaigns is running a brand lift study.
Brand lift studies generally rely on a survey format, which enables the advertiser to gain insight into the audience. The tactic leverages a methodology to gather feedback from consumers in the real world. The defined “exposed” and “control” groups are asked one specific question, or a series of questions. The “exposed” group is composed of users who have seen an ad in the past, and the “control” group contains users who have not seen the ad.
There are several benefits of running a brand lift study, all of which support the overall goal of measuring the effectiveness and impact of a campaign. We’ll use the example of a shoe brand that has run a campaign to promote its new athletic shoe design.
1. Brand lift provides new metrics. A brand lift study shows incrementality through metrics like brand awareness, ad recall, brand favorability and brand affinity. These metrics offer transparency into a brand’s public perception, or can help to assess which tactics within a campaign are driving the most impact. For the shoe brand’s new campaign, a brand lift study will provide important insights for judging the effectiveness of its campaign and how its audience responded to it.
2. Brand lift determines perception of a brand. Running a brand lift study helps uncover how an ad campaign impacts perception of a product or brand, enabling marketers to adjust and optimize their campaigns for the best results. For the shoe company, brand lift provides an opportunity to identify how the campaign contributed to the overall perception of the new shoe design.
3. It demystifies your audience. Brand lift provides insights that enable marketers to uncover what audiences think is most important about a brand. That information can be leveraged to optimize messaging so that it resonates well with the audience. The shoe company might find that messaging around the new design itself doesn’t resonate with its audience, but highlighting the benefits of the new design does.
4. You can retarget and reach new audiences. The insights from brand lift can be leveraged to create retargeting pools based on consumer responses, and build lookalike audiences. Tapping into lookalike audiences enables marketers to reach people who are likely to share similar interests and behaviors with already existing customers. For example, the shoe company might retarget audiences that have shown interest in other streetwear or athleisure brands.
5. Brand lift Informs your future campaigns. Brand lift lets marketers know what their audience truly wants, information that can be used to optimize future campaigns and achieve their marketing objectives. The shoe company, for example, might uncover important hints about what messaging and imagery appeal to its audience, and motivates the company to take further action.
A brand lift study provides a picture of the consumer sentiment and brand affinity of people who have been exposed to a campaign. It can measure the impact of upper-funnel campaigns on consumers’ perception of a brand, but it’s also effective when it comes to mid- to lower-funnel campaigns for measuring consideration or purchase intent.
These insights are an essential part of competing in today’s media landscape because they help marketers go beyond basic measurements like impressions. Brand lift enables marketers to evaluate the contributions of their digital media through more complex metrics, which help them learn what an audience has to say about a brand or a product. The result? Marketers are better able to align their ad campaigns with their brand’s message