What is Brand Awareness?

Learn all about brand awareness, how it is important to your company and how you can increase brand awareness with marketing and branding.

Marketing design
October 20, 2021

Table of Contents

Graphic Design Subscription

One-stop for all your designs. Flat monthly price, unlimited requests and revisions.

Learn how to build brand awareness and reach the right target audience, as well as which are the different models of brand awareness.

Has it ever happened to you to look at a color or shape, and to immediately think of a product? The shape of a Coca-Cola bottle, for example, is so iconic and omnipresent, that it’s hard not to recognize it right away.

Coke knew this and they created a campaign in which the product isn’t even pictured on posters and billboards, yet everyone immediately could see what is placed on it.

One might argue that this is what successful brand awareness is.

Ads of Brands

Or, here’s an even stronger example. When you cut yourself, you don’t look for an adhesive bandage. You look for a bandaid. And you don’t look for things on search engines, you ‘google’ them. When a brand or product is synonymous with the term or object it represents, that is good brand awareness.

Yet, building a successful brand doesn't happen so easily. It takes a lot of years of consistent branding, marketing and research to be able to get there.

Building brand identity is just the first step. Nurturing your brand, getting audiences acquainted with it through marketing strategies, and developing a well-rounded brand experience are the additional steps that will help you build your brand equity.

So what exactly is brand awareness, but an immediate recognition of a product or service as a result of good branding?

It refers to a customer's capacity to recognize or recall a brand under different circumstances. This memory consists of multiple brand identification visual components, overall feelings about the company, and any other information about a product or service.

One of the most important aspects of brand equity (i.e. the value of a brand) is brand awareness. The capacity of potential customers to recognize and recall a brand can influence its long-term success. It may assist the marketing team in figuring out how well potential buyers know and recall companies, and then use successful advertising efforts to increase brand recognition.

Brand awareness is at the top of the marketing funnel. It's when potential consumers first meet the company, and the marketing team's job is to draw them in and convert them into paying customers by gradually pushing them down the funnel.

People sometimes confuse or use the phrases brand awareness and brand recognition interchangeably, although they refer to two distinct concepts.

Brand recognition is a subcategory of brand awareness. It demonstrates how effectively buyers can recognize a company through visual cues such as the logo, typefaces, and colors. Brand awareness, on the other hand, includes brand recognition, general sentiments about the company, user experience data, and any other knowledge about the company.

Other relevant terms tied to brand awareness are experience, market research and branding identity.


Different brand awareness levels

Whether you are just starting your business or working for years in a very competitive industry, you need to pay close attention to brand awareness. If your target audience is not aware of your existence, you will not get the desired results. There are four distinct types of brand awareness:

  • Brand recall is used to describe a situation where a person can remember a specific brand only after being prompted with a particular category of products or services. A consumer can usually recollect at least three brands. Few people can recall up to seven brand names, as well as one or two brand names for product categories in which they have little interest. There is a significant relationship between the product category and the brand, as seen by brand recall. Unaided or spontaneous memory is another term for brand recall.
  • “Top-of-Mind” is when people can think of a specific brand first when asked to name brands in a particular category. For example, if someone asks people to think of a brand for cold medicine, they will likely put Tylenol on the top of their list. When a wider group of people is exposed to the same notion, it is referred to as the most remembered or recalled brand name. There might be a lot of recalled brand names at times. Consumers are more inclined to choose brands that they can recall "off the top of their heads" before making a purchase. This is especially true if the buyer must select between rival brands and the brand has good connections. This is most common in impulsive purchases or low-involvement categories.
  • Brand recognition is, in fact, the initial phase of brand awareness. It means that a person can recognize a particular brand only after seeing or hearing something that helps them identify the brand. Other characteristics such as slogans, packaging, logos, and jingles can help to establish brand recognition. Aided brand recall is another name for it.
  • Brand dominance occurs when a consumer can only recollect one brand name. This is also referred to as a ‘household name’, and it happens when a big percentage of individuals can only recall one brand name in a product category. It is regarded as a sign of success when a consumer recalls only that brand in a product category. For example, Bandaid and Kleenex are brand names but have become synonymous with adhesive bandages and tissues.

Why is brand awareness important?

Brand awareness is critical because it is the first stage in the marketing funnel and lays the groundwork for acquiring customers. Building and increasing it, as well as measuring brand awareness, is vital for a variety of reasons.

To begin with, it aids in keeping your brand in the minds of your target customer. People can become familiar and comfortable with your brand through different marketing tactics, such as social networking and social media posts, paid advertising campaigns in traditional media, as well as using good customer experience and nurturing as a brand awareness campaign.

When a customer recognizes your brand, they are more likely to choose you when picking out a company from a handful of competitors.

You can use brand awareness to achieve many different goals. It can help you reach a wider audience, improve website traffic, foster brand loyalty and customer satisfaction, and generate leads.

The fact that brand awareness is at the top of the marketing funnel should come as no surprise. Campaigns to raise brand awareness cast a wide net. They spread the word about what you have to offer to a large number of individuals and nurture those who are most interested in it, so customers can move down the funnel and your brand can keep growing and evolving.

Journalist turned content writer. Based in North Macedonia, aiming to be a digital nomad. Always loved to write, and found my perfect job writing about graphic design, art and creativity. A self-proclaimed film connoisseur, cook and nerd in disguise.

How we can help

A design solution you will love


Fast & Reliable

Get your design back in 1-2 business days.

Fixed Monthly Rate

Unlimited requests & revisions, same price.

Flexible & Scalable

No contracts. Scale up or down as you go.

Pro Designers

Work with battle-tested professionals only.
Book a call

Elevate your marketing design

Get inspired with some of ManyPixels best ads and marketing  designs. Download our portfolio to check them out!

Wait... there’s more!

Enjoyed the read? Subscribe to our mailing list for all the latest tips, how-tos and news on graphic design and marketing.

Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.