Back when the world was normal, assuming it ever was, I was having a small get-together at my place. That afternoon, my friend called to ask if I needed anything from the store. The first thing that occurred to me was: "a bottle of Jäger".
"They've got this selection of fancy regional liqueurs..."
"Just get the Jäger."
"I think this one is nicer, it's called..."
"Just get the Jäger."
"Listen, why don't..."
You see... I didn't know this back then, but I was experiencing the effects of brand equity. A powerful thing, brand equity. It can work subconsciously to dictate our choices—or affect our preference for what drinks to share with friends—and leave us perfectly content with our decisions, even when they're not well reasoned. That's why brands go to such great lengths to develop positive brand equity.
But what exactly is brand equity again?
What is brand equity?
Put simply, brand equity is the value of a brand as perceived by the consumer. It is the grand total and end result of a number of smaller—but equally important—elements put together. Elements like:
- Brand awareness (how familiar you are with a brand, its elements, and products)
- Brand recognition (how quickly you recognize a product or a logo as belonging to a brand)
- Brand recollection (i.e. if I say liqueur, which one comes to your mind first?—you know what my answer would be)
- Consumer perception: the perception of a brand, driven by customer experience
This is not an exhaustive list, but it's probably a good introduction to brand equity. Before your customers can invest in what you have to offer, they need to know more about your brand. This includes a recognizable logo and brand assets (think Nike or Apple), and your brand's why us factor. Oh and not to mention... customers will want to know what your brand stands for and values.
Once your prospects become customers, they need to know whether their experiences line up with their perception. This includes experiences with customer service and the quality of the product or service they received.
Brands that have a positive perception and tend to over-deliver have high brand equity. Brands that under-deliver and disappoint to the point of negative word-of-mouth, however, have negative brand equity. And for brands that have positive brand equity, it’s important to remember that it can be devalued almost overnight if trust is lost. Just like stocks can dip when the CEO says something on a whim on Twitter, so too, can your brand equity tank when someone makes a misstep.
When consumers recall, recognize, and are familiar with a brand, they are aware of the brand's identifiable elements: logos, colors, jingles, packaging—basically the brand's most important assets. Managing these assets effectively through specifically developed software like digital asset management is vital to the successful development of brand equity. But what exactly are the benefits of positive brand equity?
The three most important ROIs of brand equity
Concentrating on building high brand equity is one of the best investments a company can make. It can pay off in the end in significant ways. Just some of the ROI that your company can expect from a high brand equity include:
- Decrease advertising spend
- Higher price point
- Successful company expansion
Let's have a look at how some brands have achieved each of these benefits through the careful management of their brand assets with Bynder's DAM.
1 - Brand equity helps decrease advertising spend
Again when the world was normal, I was riding my bike alongside the canals in a very disenchanting, industrial Dutch city.
With my feet on my pedals and my stomach rumbling, I was spoilt for choice with the 40+ eateries in the main square alone. A MacDonald's billboard with directions ("Just three minutes away") and a Burger King one could have affected my decision-making process. But what really caught my eye was the red wall behind the billboard.
Just a simple red wall and I immediately knew what I wanted. I stopped a passer-by and said: "Do you have Five Guys here?". They did.
Branding consistency helps us create more brand equity across the globe. People recognize our brand - and having the right people, processes, and technology in place enables that global brand recognition.
VP of Marketing & Communications [Five Guys]
Brand consistency drives brand equity. The reassuring feeling that something familiar stays familiar, whether in the chaos of NYC or the quiet flatlands of Europe. Five Guys leveraged Bynder to achieve and maintain this level of consistency on a global level—and inspired me to eat there without even making their presence known. What they were looking for from their Bynder DAM, in order to increase brand equity, was a customizable solution that could connect their global teams and unify the way in which they present the brand.
The most effective marketing a brand can invest in is their own customers. And who doesn’t want to spend less on marketing to get greater returns? Brand loyalty leads to higher CLV (customer lifetime value.) Brand equity leads to higher stock prices.
So how do loyalty and trust translate into the second ROI of brand equity?
2 - Brand equity lets you set a higher price point
We see the effects of brand equity on ourselves all the time. Like when I decided to buy that electric trimmer from that new and hip, LA-based (they always are) brand I had seen once advertised on Instagram. I mean, who wouldn't trust such a sleek ad: with pastel colors, catchy visuals, and convincing testimonials? In my mind, it became THE trimmer. So when the time came a few months later, I bought it. Even though it was more expensive than what I wanted to pay and reviews were average. I trusted them.
Part of building a brand is building that trust with the brand. Our imagery and videos are a great way to build that trust. The more assets we have that we feel really represent us or represent what we do—the better.Michelle Boornazian
Director of Marketing Communications [ezCater]
ezCater made trust-building their mantra. Customers trust what they see and ezCater wanted to be in control of that to drive positive perception. With their Bynder DAM in place and humming along smoothly, the marketing team at ezCater was free to focus on creating more high-quality assets instead of fielding requests to locate assets from across the company. With Bynder, ezCater has laid the technology foundation that will help them to grow in the future and build trust at scale.
Brand trust is worth a lot to customers and drives brand equity. Why can some companies charge top rates for the same product as the competition? Brand equity. Customers will gladly pay premium prices for a brand they know and trust. It’s one of the reasons why YETI can sell an ice cooler for two ninety-nine when you could also get a similar product for forty dollars. Or one of the reasons why some people shop at Whole Foods instead of other grocery chains. Brand trust from your customers can result in significant brand equity that compounds over the years.
Of course, it’s also about having a stellar product or service and going to market with the right message, and enough marketing and branding assets to distribute across all customer touchpoints—but that's the price to pay to build trust.
3 - Brand equity supports successful company expansion
As your company grows, you will likely want to expand the products or services you offer. Just because one product or service is successful, though, doesn’t mean that it will translate into another one. However, brand equity can give your company enough clout with customers to entice them to buy.
For us, it’s ideal to not have to worry anymore about brand consistency. As we grow our product line, we still preserve our brand equity worldwide.Mark Eggermont
Branding Automation Administrator [Keune]
With their well-established global presence and an extensive network of partners as brand ambassadors, maintaining consistency and driving brand equity was vital for Keune to promote new lines of products globally. Keune's assets now live in the DAM, where they are efficiently approved and made available automatically to teams worldwide. It’s now easier than ever for Keune to consistently promote their brand, values, and story to an ever-growing global audience.
Positive brand equity means that enough people know and trust your brand. They will talk about your brand (word-of-mouth marketing) and stick with your brand even when you try out new product lines or offerings. All of these factors create a substantial ROI for your company. So, how exactly does digital asset management drive brand equity and increase ROI?
How does DAM help protect your brand equity?
The common theme among brand equity ROI is trust and consistency. Without a foundation of trust with your customer, your brand equity will tank, and your formerly loyal customers will stay far away. It is one of the most valuable assets a company can have. This means that it’s vital to protect all branded content and messaging to keep the level of trust your customers expect.
Digital Asset Management, or DAM, helps protect your brand assets AND your brand equity. It allows companies to create strong and recognizable messaging and content; and It helps ensure there is consistent branding across all content, marketing campaigns, and products.
Think about how your company handles cash. Not just anyone can go in and handle it. Instead, businesses use safes, banks, and armoured trucks to make sure it is safe. Likewise, a DAM protects your valuable content and brand equity. A DAM system has built-in insurance with backups, recovery, and SLAs to keep everything secure and protect the longevity of your digital assets.
Finding ways to develop and maintain brand equity is one of the end goals of every marketing team. And quite rightly, because it works. I don't consider myself particularly gullible—*clears throat*—and yet I do fall head over heels for dozens of brands every week. I talk about them, recommend them, and spend money on them. That's the power of brand equity.
Your DAM ROI is intrinsically linked with your brand equity. A company’s ability to obtain valuable word-of-mouth, charge premium prices, and successfully launch new products or services will directly affect their profits. Find out more in our report below 👇.
Not enough on brands for you? Need another hit? Just go here for a copy of Bynder's Ebook "Brand Management Software for Dummies"!