How Much Does a Brand Audit Cost? (4 Pricing Factors Revealed)
Do you want to know the cost of a brand audit? Our comprehensive guide on brand audit fees tells you everything. In under 2 minutes.
May 15, 2023
Brand audits are becoming increasingly important for businesses. They allow organizations to overcome "tunnel vision" and get an unbiased evaluation of how the company's brand is performing in the marketplace. An audit also equips a business with the insights needed to stay competitive and gain market share.
One of the first questions companies have about the process is:
How much does a brand audit cost?
In this post, I will discuss the factors used to set brand audit fees. In addition, I will explore the various elements in an audit for small businesses and those for enterprise brands.
In the end, you will know if the benefits of an audit outweigh the potential costs and if investing in a one is right for your business.
What Is a Brand Audit?
A brand audit helps organizations uncover strengths and weaknesses, improve target audience quality, become more competitive, and reduce marketing expenses.
A Brand Assessment for Businesses of All Sizes
Setting specific objectives prior to requesting a proposal will help the brand audit firm develop an assessment that meets the client’s expectations. We advise clients to meet with us at least twice before submitting the audit proposal. This gives both parties—the client and The Brand Auditors—an opportunity to make sure the audit will be comprehensive.
Most small businesses need standard brand audits, which includes a review of the internal and external brand. They also usually require website optimization and a review of their online presence—including social media, reviews, and directory listings. An audit also takes less time because the business owner can work directly with the auditor, keeping the number of people involved to a minimum.
Brand audits for enterprise clients are more complex and include interviews with leadership, team management, employees, and marketing vendors. Interviews with focus groups or existing customers may also part of the process.
When conducting a brand audit for a larger company, the auditor may have to dive deeper into areas such as the organization's social media presence, website conversion optimization, paid advertising optimization, and market segmentation analysis—all customized to meet specific goals of each the client.
4 Factors Used to Set Brand Audit Fees
As you might imagine, fees for brand audits are based on the depth and scope of the project. But generally, there are four areas to consider when pricing an audit project.
The degree of preparation required is the first factor that affects the audit fee.
Ideally, your organization should have all the information needed for the audit and can make it readily available. However, if you need the brand audit firm to help you gather data and prepare for the audit, then the fee will be much higher. You can ask the auditor in advance if they have included any preparation in the fee and, if so, how much.
We recommend our clients take the time to do as much work in advance before bringing us into the process. This will keep fees lower and help the auditor deliver the best results. It also shortens the timeline for completing the audit and reduces potential delays during subsequent audit stages.
The cost of a brand audit can vary based on the number of areas covered. For example, if your company has an existing brand strategy and you only want a basic SWOT assessment, then the fee will be lower than if you require an extensive review of your organizational operations that includes sales, customer service, product development and digital marketing strategies.
Most audits include a detailed report from a brand strategist that discloses findings and recommendations related to the company's visual identity (i.e., logo), website (including analytics), a content review (for each blog post and other content marketing), and relevant feedback on marketing campaigns (i.e., advertising)
If you are launching a new brand, an audit can help you develop a brand strategy that helps when creating an effective visual identity, positioning your company against the most relevant competitors, and identifying the most profitable groups of customers.
Brand audits also help mature companies get feedback that will help them determine if a rebrand is in order.
We suggest discussing your goals with the auditor before deciding what areas to include.
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Research and Data Requirements
The accuracy of information and data is critical for a brand audit process to be successful. So, it is essential for clients to be sure that all data required by the auditor is accurate and up to date. The more accurate this data is, the more reliable the brand audit results will be and reduces possible delays or unnecessary interruptions.
If needed, the auditor can perform other types of research using focus groups, can survey consumers, or get feedback from vendors and existing customers.
Performing research and ensuring data accuracy are the most time-consuming aspects of a brand audit.
Companies can reduce audit expenses if they already have access to data, such as customer demographics, marketing analytics, and other relevant information. But when auditors must put in extra time and effort to research the client’s target market, sector, or gather other relevant information, the client can expect to incur extra fees. This part of the process can account for as much as 50 percent or more of the total audit expense.
Post-Audit Brand Strategy Consulting
Post-audit brand strategy consulting can be an invaluable asset. Experienced brand strategists can work with clients to review the audit report and provide best practices for implementing recommendations. As a result, businesses can take advantage of their insight and knowledge throughout the process—increasing the return on investment.
Post-audit brand strategy consulting also helps business owners or brand executives who might have become overwhelmed with the complexity of the audit. By relying on an expert’s guidance, it will be easier for companies to develop and prioritize an implementation plan and carry it out efficiently.
Auditors rarely include brand strategy consulting fees in the original scope. We recommend asking the firm whether they have included consulting fees in the audit scope—and if so, how much. In most cases, consulting fees are an optional and additional expense.
Fees for Audits Performed by Branding and Marketing Agencies
If you are thinking of hiring a branding or marketing agency to perform a brand audit, there are a few things to consider. The cost of the audit depends on what kind of services the agency is providing.
Branding and marketing agencies often use audits to sell their services. In many cases, an agency will offer complimentary or low-cost brand assessments, hoping to land full-scale projects such as web design, logo creation, or ad campaign management.
Although these audits offer some value, agencies will often deliver audit results that require additional work involving their specialized services. For instance, a free SEO or conversion optimization audit might suggest the need to correct certain issues identified during the audit. Subsequently, the agency may include an offer for SEO services with the report.
To make sure you get an unbiased and accurate view, it is advantageous to hire a neutral third-party auditor who does not have a vested interest in promoting their own products or services based on the results of the audit.
Other Costs Associated with a Brand Audit
There are other costs associated with a brand audit as well.
For example, companies must devote time and resources to conducting the audit. The audit process can disrupt business operations because staff members may need to spend time on the audit instead of their usual workflow. Some employees may find the audit experience stressful, even if their roles are not affected by it.
Additional challenges might occur when significant changes results from the audit. It can take considerable effort for companies to roll out updates. Lack of clarity or direction can lead to confusion among departments, which can adversely affect everyone in the organization.
Overall, while a brand audit provides valuable insights that improve performance and bolster a company’s competitive advantage, companies should be ready for the challenges that come with implementing new strategies afterward.
How Much Does a Brand Audit Cost?
How Long Does It Take to Complete a Brand Audit?
The timeframe for conducting a brand audit typically depends on the size of the organization and the level of details. Smaller business audits may only take 3-4 weeks, while a corporate audit could require 8 weeks or more.
It is important to conduct regular audits (i.e., annually) to keep track of industry changes and target audience needs, and to remain competitive in your industry.
Organizations that conduct a brand audit on a regular basis (i.e., annually) face less work each time they perform an audit. This reduces fees over the long-term and helps a business stay on track to meet its growth goals.
What Makes The Brand Auditors Process Unique?
Businesses invest thousands in digital strategies, but face setbacks because it is not always easy to find the right help. There is a lot of false information in circulation, and it is tough to know who you can trust. Plus, it takes knowledge and resources to do the job right.
That is where The Brand Auditors comes in.
We are not a branding or marketing agency—we are your brand advocates.
That means our success is tied to yours.
We guide our clients through an audit process that goes beyond traditional marketing audits so they can discover new ways to break through the noise. Our proven audit process—combined with strategy planning—we equip companies with the tools needed for long-term success on any platform.
Our objective is simple: Help clients get their strategies on track and optimize ROI.
A professional level brand audit can be an invaluable investment. But the cost of an audit will depend on what you need to help your company develop a successful growth strategy.
If you have questions or want to know how much a brand audit will cost, email me personally at [email protected].
Until next time,
Are you ready to find out how a brand audit can transform your business?
Our brand audit process is a comprehensive analysis designed to help companies increase ROI and reduce marketing expenses.
- Increase ROI on lead generation and sales conversions.
- Reduce marketing expenses.
- Strengthen brand positioning to become more competitive.
We guarantee satisfaction or get your money back! Schedule a discovery call with a brand auditor to find out more.
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