Which Targeting Option Is Best for Achieving Brand Awareness?

Find out what the best targeting option is for increasing brand awareness and engagement, so you can reach your desired audience and get the most out of your investment.

February 16, 2023

Which targeting option is best for achieving brand awareness


Getting your brand out there and reaching new customers is essential in today’s competitive market. Many companies turn to social media as the go-to platform for connecting with their target audience.

But that just scratches the surface. If you really want to build brand awareness, you will need to explore all the possibilities. From geographics and demographics to custom audiences—there are several targeting options available when creating brand awareness campaigns.

In this article, we are going to look at each type of targeting option and discuss how to use them to achieve brand awareness.

How Do You Build Brand Awareness?

A strong brand identity plays a key role in building and growing brand awareness. A brand’s identity should align with the target audience and accurately represent products or services. At a minimum, you need a unique logo and tagline. But if you really want to stand out, be creative and do something that sets your brand apart. For instance, you could produce a jingle that will help people remember your business.

Multichannel marketing will give your brand the greatest exposure. You should use traditional and digital media, such as:


Print advertising

Online advertising

Social media platforms

Influencer marketing

Content marketing (blogging, video content)

Google Ads

If possible, use several of these channels to help you reach new customers and engage more with existing ones.

For businesses that don’t have the funds for paid advertising campaigns, there are still ways to increase your brand’s visibility. Attending industry events or joining local business networks are examples. These can help you build connections with potential customers directly. Press releases and public relations activity also do wonders for establishing credibility and brand recognition.

At its core, successful brand awareness is about making sure everyone knows who you are, the type of business you are in, and what makes it different from the competition. Implementing creative strategies, like those listed above, can help you accomplish these goals without breaking the bank.

How to Track Brand Awareness
IMAGE: How to Track Brand Awareness

How Do You Track Brand Awareness?

Brand awareness is important for every business. It directly influences purchasing decisions, customer loyalty, and user engagement. However, you must be able to measure awareness campaigns to make sure they are contributing to the bottom line. After all, if something doesn’t get results, you should probably avoid it.

Fortunately for marketers and business owners, there are a variety of methods that make it possible to track brand awareness.

Website traffic and sales are the most reliable ways to measure how well your brand is doing online. Google Analytics allows you to assess website traffic so you can determine which strategies are driving more prospects to your website. GA also provides tools that allow you to set ROI conversion goals for each campaign. For example, you can look at how many visitors converted on a specific landing page to figure out which awareness activities are actually driving purchases.

Social media is another way to track how your audience perceives your brand and their level of engagement with the content you share. Monitoring shares and comments on social media channels will reveal how many people see your content and what kind of response these posts receive.

Evaluate comments that people leave on social media pages. These provide further insights into whether users appreciate the content you are sharing.

Surveys are another effective form of brand awareness measurement. They gather direct responses from customers who have interacted with a brand—offline or online. Survey results give consumers the opportunity to express their opinions regarding the quality of products and customer service experiences. This information can help business management address problems and how to improve processes.

How to Measure Brand Awareness

Unlock the key to success with this guide on how to measure brand awareness. Build an effective strategy and start tracking impressions, reach and more.

Why Most Brand Awareness Strategies Don’t Work

Most brand awareness strategies don’t work because they only focus on one platform or type of content. For example, many companies try to rely solely on social media or paid advertising to reach their target audience.

While these platforms and tactics can generate some brand awareness, they won’t be effective if that is the only method you are using. So brands must consider a multi-faceted approach to get the results they want.

A multi-faceted strategy means using a variety of methods and targeting options to create an integrated brand experience across multiple channels.

For example, incorporating organic social media posts, paid search campaigns, display ads, influencer partnerships, email campaigns, and more into your marketing mix can increase brand recognition.

It is also important to optimize each tool used to “greet” potential customers who respond to an awareness campaign. For example, if you send visitors to your website from an awareness ad, the website’s landing page should meet UI and UX standards to increase the chances that users will stay on the page.

Many times, companies run a brand awareness campaign that works well, but they do a sub-par job of preparing the website or e-commerce platform to receive potential customers when they arrive.

What Is an Effective Process for Running Brand Awareness Campaigns?

Effective targeting strategies for brand awareness involve using a variety of tools to reach the right audience. Start with Google AdWords and Facebook advertising to get your message out there. Once those are working for you, move to LinkedIn, Twitter, other social media platforms, and influencer marketing campaigns.

Remember not to bombard your audience with content or irrelevant advertising material. This can turn off potential customers. Instead, create ads that are relevant, interesting, informative, and engaging while being concise.

Adopt monitoring software to check key performance indicators, such as impressions, click-through rate (CTR), and cost per conversion (CPC). Tracking will help you make adjustments if initial results are disappointing. Be sure to follow up on activities and results often so you can determine the best tactics to use for future brand awareness campaigns.

Achieving brand awareness often starts with an effective campaign process. This process involves developing creative ideas, creating content and visuals, setting up the target audience, testing reach, launching the campaign, optimizing delivery, and gathering data from the results.

First, identify objectives you hope to achieve by running the campaign and choose a timeline for the launch. Of course, be sure to include other details, like budget.

Once you have a clear idea in mind for what your campaign should look like and when to launch, it is time to create content and visuals.

With those complete, it is time to explore targeting. Determine who you want to reach with each campaign and set up your target audiences accordingly (e.g., location-based targeting or interest-based targeting).

Then, create ad or landing page copy that will address your target audience’s desires. As a result, they will be more likely to engage with your ad when it shows up in front of them. It is also best to test different ads before going all-in on one option. This helps you figure out which ad creative works best and gives you an opportunity to catch errors or mistakes.

Finally, gather analytics from your brand awareness campaigns to learn what other steps you can take to optimize results.

Brand awareness process
IMAGE: Brand awareness process

Brand Awareness: Which Targeting Option Is Best for You?

The short answer is: The targeting strategies you use will depend on your budget, target audience, and campaign goals.

Traditional advertising methods, such as television commercials or radio spots, may require a larger budget than other non-traditional options like social media marketing and influencer campaigns. But if traditional channels are the best way to reach your target audience, you will be better off using them. Local brick and mortar stores may find that these methods work best. Of course, an online brand may not need to use any traditional forms of advertising.

Companies that want to grow their brand should identify what type of audience they need to connect with, whether it is a distinct niche market or people across all platforms and channels. When you know these things, it is easier to define which tactics will be the most effective for reaching your desired audience.

Many brands attempt to use organic reach to generate brand awareness because it is the cheapest option. And organic reach can be a great way for your business to get attention without having to pay for advertising. For example, companies can use digital platforms like YouTube and Instagram to post videos or images that focus on products, services, team members, and the brand’s mission to give existing customers and new audiences insight into the business.

But building genuine brand awareness with organic reach is difficult. Digital platforms are making it tougher to reach audiences organically. As an example, only about 5.5 percent of a brand’s followers will actually see organic content in their Facebook newsfeed.

This makes search engine optimization another valuable method for gaining visibility online. Even though it can take some time (i.e., 6-9 months), SEO often yields results more quickly than organic posts targeted at individuals through social media networks. SEO practices include keyword research and link building designed to position businesses higher in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

Ultimately, the most suitable option depends on the resources you have. But there are many approaches applicable at any stage of growth, from start-up companies trying to break into the market to established brands that want to refresh customer interest.

Brand Awareness on Google Ads

With a lot of creativity, patience, and an appropriate budget, Google Ads can be an effective way to build brand awareness.

You can use relevant keywords for targeted search ads, but are limited to just one location (search engine results pages).

Display ads offer more visibility and better options for brand awareness because a wide variety of people see them across the Google Display Network.

I’ll go into more detail on each in the sections that follow.

Google Display Network

By taking advantage of the Google Display Network, you can target potential consumers who may not be familiar with your brand. Through careful placement of ads, combined with accurate targeting, you can introduce people to your company’s offers and set the stage for future interactions. As people become more aware of your brand name, it will be easier for them to recognize and remember it when engaged in future searches or browsing activities.

Placement Targeting

Placement targeting is a great tool for YouTube and Google Display Network campaigns. It helps you choose the sites, apps, and ad units that are most likely to convert. Placements can range from an entire website to a single page on a site, to video content or a mobile app.

As you search for placements on either network, you will find options sorted according to their estimated performance for your ads. This sorting is based on both the keywords entered the search bar, and past statistical analysis of each placement’s traffic history.

By using placement targeting, you can create ad groups tailored for potential reach. This enables you to deliver ads with higher value placements instead of spreading budgets across several lower quality ones.

Thus, by strategically targeting particular placements within display campaigns, marketers can essentially control which sites or apps their ads will appear on. This is an opportunity to boost visibility and increase the likelihood that your ads will convert.

Contextual Targeting

Contextual targeting allows you to match your ads to relevant sites in the Display Network based on the keywords or topics you choose. Google analyzes each webpage to determine its central theme, and then matches them to your ads using language and location targeting, recent browsing history of visitor, and other factors.

When using contextual targeting, Google Ads also lets you customize where people will see your ad. For example, a brand selling medical products could target health websites and a sportswear company could target sport-related websites, so that only those interested in what you offer will see it. You can also block sites that aren’t a good fit for your product or service.

Contextual targeting helps you reach potential customers who are already interested in what you offer. When combined with well-defined audience segments, marketers can create targeted messaging and campaigns at scale.

Custom Affinity Audiences

Custom Affinity Audiences are typically one of the best targeting options for achieving brand awareness. This type of audience allows you to target potential customers based on their interests and lifestyle. You can create custom audiences based on existing customer data, or you can use third-party data to target audiences with specific lifestyles and interests.

Advanced analysis allows advertisers to pull out nuances, visualize relationships and take advantage of the full range of possibilities in these categories.

The ability to zero-in on interests, hobbies, and lifestyle factors creates powerful, well-defined campaigns that yield robust ROI. Applying insights from affinity audiences with personalized creative can result in highly impactful ads that get noticed.

Google Display Ads
IMAGE: Google Display Ads (Source: Google)

Google Search Network

With the Google Search Network, you can set up ads to be displayed for relevant keywords related to your company or product.

By targeting an audience directly based on their search intent and specific interests, you can reach potential customers who are looking for products and services related to your brand. This means that when potential customers type in a keyword searching query that applies to your business, they will see your ad in the featured part of the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages).

Search ads leverage user intent, but display ads don’t. Search ads detect what the searcher wants, making it easier for them to find exactly what they are looking for.

The difference between the two ad types becomes more noticeable when we look at engagement rates. People usually click on search ads much more often than display ads—by a ratio of over 5 to 1.

The Search Network is better for lead generation compared to the Display Network. So many B2B companies and marketing agencies opt for this type of advertising instead of relying entirely on Display Network ads.

Google Search Ads
IMAGE: Google Search Ads (source: Google)

So, which one is better for brand awareness?

In our view, a combination of search and display ads works best. But for brand awareness, ads on the display network are cheaper and therefore, may be the best place to start for brand awareness campaigns.

Brand Awareness on Facebook Ads

Brand awareness on Facebook Ads is another effective marketing strategy. We can place ads on the social media platform on the news feed or sidebar. While sidebar ads are ideal for increasing brand visibility, they come with reduced moderation, leading to a greater risk of spam and lower quality content.

Meanwhile, Facebook newsfeed ads give businesses the opportunity to have both text and images with a link.

To help prioritize ad distribution and ensure each post has an achievable goal, Facebook allows businesses to specify their objective for every ad. This tells the social network what type of outcome an advertiser hopes to achieve from their advertising campaign.

Facebook awareness ads
IMAGE: Facebook awareness ads

Custom Audiences

Custom Audiences and Lookalike Audiences are a unique tool offered by Facebook to help companies target consumers who may not be aware of their brand. Custom audiences allow businesses to create up to 500 individual lists of users based on topics, pages, interests, and other sources.

Lookalike audiences take an existing customer list and create an entirely new one populated with users who share the same metrics as the original group. This is a great way to expand brand awareness because it targets people who may be interested in what you offer but don’t know about your brand.

Combining these features provides an effective way to target potential customers quickly and economically. Custom audiences help you reach the people who fit a predetermined user demographic. Lookalike Audiences enable you to discover potential new customers based on interests of existing ones.

Interest Targeting

Interest Targeting on Facebook is a powerful tool to reach an audience that is interested in a particular topic. This targeting technique enables you to advertise to people based on their activity and interests. This can include anything from pages they like to post and keywords associated with the topic.

This kind of targeting allows advertisers to be much more specific in terms of their target market. You can segment users into particular niches, such as those currently researching a product or service. The algorithm can even identify device details like the type of phone and Wi-Fi connection speed used.

However, it is important to stay focused when using these targeting tools. Over-targeting can lead to spending too much time experimenting with ads instead of getting actual results from campaigns. Be sure you know which interests to target and what customer data to use first.

Facebook Ad Platform
IMAGE: Facebook Ad Platform

How The Brand Auditors Can Help You Optimize Brand Awareness Targeting

The Brand Auditors can help you optimize campaign targeting and build brand awareness. We use custom analysis and insights to show you what kind of content, channels, and campaigns are working best so you can get results.

We also look at your website’s traffic data, engagement metrics on social media, ideal search engine results pages (SERPs), and more to determine which targeting options might work best for your business. With us on your side, you will have a better understanding of how to reach your target audience.

We can also show you how to increase visibility through various online channels, such as organic search, pay-per-click ads, display advertising campaigns, influencer marketing strategies, and even Amazon product listing optimization.

Working with The Brand Auditors offers you access to data-driven insights that will allow you to make informed decisions and achieve brand awareness across digital platforms.


The best targeting option for achieving brand awareness is to use a combination of several tactics. Each method has its own benefits and disadvantages that you must consider. There is no one-size-fits-all approach—each business’s target audience is unique and requires its own unique strategy.

With the right mix of targeting strategies, you can boost your brand recognition and expand your reach exponentially.

If you have any questions, please email me at chris@brandauditors.com.

Until next time,


Chris Fulmer

Chris Fulmer

Brand Strategist | Managing Director

Chris Fulmer is a professional brand development manager who provides expert insights on brand strategy, media channels, and other essential information required for marketing success. This includes market research, analytics analysis, and web design best practices.

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