Lots of brand managers share the same frustration: How do I get the brand on the agenda for the next board meeting? The challenge here lies in the brand being an intangible asset, which makes its performance and value difficult to measure, and the board expects hard data when considering investment in the brand. According to Brand Finance, your brand represents 18% of the value of your organisation, which means that the board should really take notice of it. These five tips will show you how you can use brand analytics to put your brand back on the agenda.

Tip 1: Measure your brand performance using real-time metrics

Make sure you measure the performance of your brand. This can be done in different ways, for example a research agency can do an annual analysis. This usually results in extensive reports which show where your brand stands. However, the disadvantage of this approach is that you will only have one or two moments per year when you can truly analyse your brand. Another – and in my opinion better – method is to measure the performance of your brand through real-time metrics. These metrics are increasingly available, but are not often used to measure brand performance. The advantage of real-time measurement is that you can quickly make fact-based choices to ensure that your brand is on the right route. It also offers the possibility to provide regular updates on the status and performance of the brand, so that the boardroom and the rest of the organisation can ensure that the brand remains ‘alive’.

“The advantage of real-time brand metrics is that you can make fact-based choices every day to put your brand on the right route.”

Tip 2: Bring your brand metrics together in one overview

I would recommend you put all relevant data and brand metrics together in one central location. This prevents you from having to look at different tools (Google Analytics, social media platforms, backlink tools, etc.) side-by-side, where it’s often difficult to identify similarities and to make connections without a clear overview. Through APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), it’s possible to collect data from different sources – from ERP, CRM, DAM and brand portal systems – in one dashboard. You can also combine data from different sources into data ‘visualisations’, which can lead to interesting correlations and insights. A single overview of all relevant brand analytics will give you complete insight into how your brand performs. There are various dashboard tools available to connect data and make your brand performance tangible in a simple way.

Tip 3: Apply a model to measure your brand performance

Real-time brand analytics are relatively easy to obtain via Google Analytics, social media, email marketing tools and backlink tools, etc. But how do you interpret all this data? To connect the data and give it meaning, it’s helps to use a data model to bring together all of your isolated data into a total brand performance score. VIM developed this into a brand funnel. With this brand funnel, you can map out your complete brand lifecycle; from the visibility of your brand to your relevancy to your target groups. The funnel consists of five phases and each phase is linked to multiple data points that ultimately provide an overall score for each individual phase.

Brand funnel phases:

Phase Data
1. Brand Presence Shows where you as a brand are present and therefore visible, e.g ‘social reach’.
2. Brand Interest Displays data that shows that people are interested in your brand, e.g ‘newsletter click-through rates’.
3. Brand Appreciation How people appreciate your brand, e.g ‘service satisfaction’.
4. Brand Loyalty Shows how people are loyal to your brand, e.g ‘number of social media subscribers’.
5. Brand Engagement How your brand is being promoted by others, e.g ‘number of content shares’.

Tip 4: Share your brand performance with the board and the rest of the organisation

Sharing is caring. When people are aware of the brand performance, they themselves will pay more attention to the brand. Make sure you can share your brand KPIs and results with the board and the rest of the organisation. Think about sharing login details with relevant stakeholders so that they can view the dashboard at any time. The question is whether the senior management team will view it. My advice: make it readily and easily available for them.

“Do you want to encourage your organisation to raise your brand performance? Share your brand KPIs and results in a central place within your organisation.”

Dashboard tools have the functionality to automatically share specific data insights every week or month via email to a predetermined selection of people. However, in the boardroom it would be wise to plan a fixed moment to share the brand results, for example, in the monthly marketing and communications update. Do you want to encourage your organisation to raise your brand performance? Share your brand KPIs and results in a central place within your organisation. This can be by displaying them on a screen, by embedding the dashboard on your intranet, or by creating an internal smartphone app.

Tip 5: Ensure your brand continues to develop and receive attention

Managing your brand is a continuous activity. It’s not just a project, but a process. Ensure your brand receives continuous attention and development. You can achieve this in a number of ways:

  • Frequently check whether you can add metrics to your brand dashboard for higher reliability and relevance to your data and KPIs.
  • Be certain to establish that the brand remains on the board agenda by discussing the brand funnel scores every month.
  • Ensure that someone (on the board or senior management) has final authority or feels responsible for the brand.
  • Share your brand KPI data in a central, transparent location so that brand performance is visible throughout the organisation.

Your brand is not static. The world is changing and to keep your brand up-to-date you have to continually invest in it. If you can show the board how important the brand is and what it delivers to the organisation, you have taken the first important step. It will then be easier to generate a budget for your brand activities, but perhaps just as important, it is more likely that senior management will become brand ambassadors and support and lead by example in your organisation. Both are needed to make your brand a success, now and in the future.