Show Brand Impact to Company Revenues and Profits
- Brand impact reporting must show how to connect data, insights, action and outcomes. The best reporting is less about measuring value and more about creating value.
- Branding investments should demonstrate the same measurability to revenues and profits as any other marketing or business development program.
- Brand metrics are valuable in as much as they help grow revenues. Even small improvements to brand programs are shown to deliver significant financial impact.
Link Brand Impact to Company Performance
Most executives believe growing your company brand is a good idea. But good ideas are a dime a dozen. No idea or business development effort is sustainable unless it can show a profit. Branding is no exception.
That's where brand impact reporting comes in. It shows how the investment and effort are directly attributable to revenue attainment and business growth.
Good reporting doesn't just account for goodwill or other intangible value. It delivers insights, shapes promotion strategy and reallocates the budget. In fact, if your analytics are not causing course corrections and shifting tactics, they are not working.
There are three types of brand impact reporting that are essential to effective brand management. They include real-time information that shows what's working and not working, predictive analytics that shift reporting from hindsight to foresight, and a data transformation pipeline that converts raw data into actionable insights.
Clear objectives set the vision and create the roadmap, but rigorous execution as measured by the right key performance indicators (KPIs) direct the path to success and the realization of results.
A performance dashboard displays the most important brand metrics in an easy to consume visual interface. This real-time information enables marketers or brand managers to quickly identify trouble spots and intervene with timely course corrections.
Most dashboards only display historical data. The best dashboards shift from lagging to leading indicators. And the very best brand dashboards enable metrics to be interactive, so marketers can perform What-If modeling and scenario planning. This type of pro forma modeling is a powerful lever to compare branding program alternatives and allocate budget and scarce resources.
When program metrics can model future performance, they become even more actionable. They shift visibility from where you have been to where you are going. It's the difference between looking in your car’s rearview mirror or through the windshield.
Below is an example of Johnny Grow dashboard.
Predictive reporting analyzes historical and real-time data to show patterns, relationships and trends, and create simulation, propensity and predictive models. These analytics orchestrate data and extend the trajectory of data to deliver forecasts.
The best analytics support real-time predictive modeling to show how changes in customer behaviors or company actions impact brand programs which then impact revenue results. They display forward looking analytics and show the financial impact of both action and inaction.
The below Johnny Grow Brand Management Predictive Pyramid is an example of reporting that shifts information visibility from hindsight to foresight. It's also this level of reporting that connects metrics with prescriptive guidance, such as investment allocation, best practice recommendations and links to Marketing Playbooks.
We know from our brand research that industry benchmarks bring context to extrapolation to performance measures.
These performance benchmarks do a few things. First, they support the most important goals used to build your brand business case or strategy. Second, they provide a relative comparison to identify where the company stands and most needs to improve.
And third, they enable predictive analytics. Many marketers like to apply pro forma models to show how a 1 percent improvement in any brand KPI impacts company revenues or profits.
Other clients with KPIs below the industry median may prefer to see the revenue impact by improving their performance to the median level. Knowing the financial upside allows marketers to know how much they should invest to achieve that upside.
Many marketers are data rich but information poor. They understand the value of data but struggle to transform it into actionable intelligence.
Marketing data has evolved from an information system byproduct to a strategic asset and business currency. But to capitalize on data, it must be converted from a raw material into information, and then into actionable insights.
You can automate the data transformation process using a tool for the data extract, transform and load. Data extraction harvests data from defined source locations. Data transformation filters, normalizes, appends, formats or otherwise processes data. Data loading then inserts the transformed data to a destination, such as a dashboard.
The Point is This
Brand value is real. But to put your brand to work and keep the needed investment, brand impact measurements should shift from soft figures to bottom line financial calculations. Only then can you demonstrate the true value. Or possibly that the brand is the company's most valuable asset.
As said by John Stewart, CEO of the Quaker Oats Company, "If this business were to be split up, I would be glad to take the brands, trademarks, and goodwill, and you could have all the bricks and mortar — and I would fare better than you."