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Brand Relevance: Does Your Brand Matter to Your Customers?

Find out how to enhance your brand relevance to increase customer impact and ensure long-term business growth and success. 

Written by RamotionJun 4, 20248 min read

Last updated: Jun 4, 2024

Defining Brand Relevance

Nowadays, it takes more than popularity to win the hearts of many consumers. Brands that can tug hearts and align with the values and sentiments of their target audiences get more attention. And in a highly competitive market, high brand relevance results in long-term success.

But what makes brands relevant? Read on as we discuss brand relevance, what it entails, and how being a relentlessly pertinent brand helps face challenges and pave the way to future business growth.

It answers the question, “How important is your business to your customers in the sea of other competing brands or companies?”

Brand relevance can be instrumental in creating an effective brand strategy and achieving business growth.

Let’s look at Apple, the most relevant brand across the globe. Apple has proven its relentlessly relevant reputation by clinching the top position despite its numerous competing businesses in the market, like Samsung, Google, and Microsoft. It has weathered economic disasters and is a leader in technological innovation. In a constantly evolving market, Apple adapts its strategies to meet the changing demands. 

As a result of its resiliency, Apple’s brand value is at US $880 billion. So, how can you assess your brand’s relevance?

Assessing Brand Relevance

There are many indicators when measuring your brand’s relevance. You can rely on customer feedback, in-store and digital, to track conversations about your business on different channels. You can use tools that measure engagement for every content on social media and other platforms. 

Conducting a competitive analysis of other companies also gives insight into your market share and assesses the strengths and weaknesses of your brand versus others. Finally, you can measure NPS or Net Promoter Score, which indicates how likely your customers will recommend your brand to others by gauging their satisfaction rate. 

The Net Promoter Score indicates customer satisfaction your brand delivers. Illustration via Hubspot

For reference, you can compute your Net Promoter Score by subtracting the total percentage of people who wouldn’t recommend your brand from the total percentage of those who would. A satisfactory NPS rate is 35 or above, but this varies depending on your industry, the condition of the economy, and competitive markets.

Brand relevance takes years to build. Once established, though, customer retention and acquisition become easier. There are three phases to becoming a relentlessly relevant brand:

  1. Phase One: Developing Brand Relevance
  2. Phase Two: Communicating Brand Relevance
  3. Phase Three: Evaluating and Adjusting Brand Relevance

Phase One: Developing Brand Relevance

Creating value for your business and brand begins by understanding your customers. It entails collecting data on their age, location, interests, and income levels. It also includes going deep into the psyche of your target audience by observing how they interact with your brand or other businesses. 

This information helps identify unmet customer expectations your brand can address as you innovate products and services. As you position your business to resonate more with your target audience, they start to see you as a relevant contributor to their lives—a must-have instead of a good-to-have.

Ensuring a relevant brand requires being adaptable to meet customer expectations. Products or services should align with current market trends—audience interest, brand voice, values, social nuances, etc.

You can create a healthy environment to build brand loyalty, encourage business growth, and enhance marketing and branding efforts for maximum results. 

Phase Two: Communicating Brand Relevance

Now that you know your customers’ challenges, it is time to communicate how your brand fits their wants and needs. You can employ effective messaging techniques to nurture a solid emotional connection.

For example, weave narrative elements in your branding efforts when describing how your brand positively influenced your existing customers. Beyond a transactional relationship, demonstrate how your brand can be transformative and double down on what sets you apart from other businesses.

When customers anchor your brand to positive emotions—happiness, comfort, etc. —an authentic connection is made. Leverage digital channels, such as social media posts, blogs, interviews, testimonials, or branded videos, to spread a positive narrative.

Finally, consistency is vital to building brand relevance. The brand experience you deliver should reflect your brand values, mission, and promises across all touchpoints. Over time, your brand will become relatable and memorable.

Phase Three: Evaluating and Adjusting Brand Relevance

Brand relevance can change due to competition, evolving behaviors, and trends. Hence, it is ideal to implement a comprehensive or all-encompassing approach when measuring your brand relevance.

Evaluating Brand Relevance

For instance, you can assess if your brand equity model is working in strategizing your marketing campaigns at different touchpoints. Consider implementing a brand scorecard that measures your impact in various categories, like engagement, brand perception, and brand awareness. 

Most marketers rely on the brand relevance index. Created by global consulting firm Prophet, the brand relevance index quantifies how companies connect with their customers by evaluating the following index:

  • Customer Obsession: indicates how well companies understand their customers. 
  • Ruthless Pragmatism pertains to how companies address customers’ pain points on a physical and emotional level. 
  • Pervasive Innovation: measures how innovation-driven brands are. 
  • Distinctive Inspiration: indicates the importance of going above and beyond to deliver unique value propositions to a company. 

Other indicators for your brand relevance are conversion rate, lead generation cost, and customer retention rate. Once you have actual results, compare them with your target metrics and see how you measure up.

Improving Brand Relevance

The information gathered from your set metrics is instrumental in detecting weaknesses in your brand strategy. A periodic review of your brand relevance enables on-time intervention of poor customer experiences. It also helps gauge if your content is relevant and communication remains authentic and consistent.

So, how do these phases translate in the real world? Let’s examine two relevant brands: Netflix and Toyota.

Examples of Relevant Brands in the Market

Netflix: Become Adaptable to Maintain Relevance

One company considered a disruptor in the world of at-home entertainment is Netflix. It trumped other streaming giants like Blockbuster and brought the industry to new heights. Nearly 30 years later, the brand remains on top. 

But what’s the secret to its success?

Netflix welcomes change by embracing technological advancements. This has become its secret weapon in ensuring relevance in the digital age. It also implements a customer-centric approach by providing original content in different genres.

As the business expanded outside the United States, it had to adapt to diverse audiences. That said, Netflix leverages data science and artificial intelligence to optimize customer experience. 

Just take a look at its recommendations system. It’s sophisticated, browsing through thousands of content as it curates titles based on your preference. This is a vital feature because choosing what to watch can sometimes be a tedious experience for many of us. 

Through AI, Netflix improved its targeted advertising while ensuring the content remains relevant. Netflix shares, “...over 80 percent of content watched on Netflix is driven by the recommendations.” The result? A highly personalized user experience. 

Over the years, Netflix has built strong emotional connections with its audience to increase brand relevance. Some customers feel nostalgia and comfort as they watch their all-time favorites. Netflix has also tailored its services to cater to different needs.

Toyota: A Practical Problem-Solving Approach Wins the Game

Another excellent company among known relevant brands is Toyota. The Japanese car company has long been a market leader in the automobile industry. Thanks to its innovative design and technology, the brand is known for its reliability, making it a favorite for individuals and families. 

Among the pillars of the Toyota Production System is its problem-solving approach, which stresses sustainability while producing cars that address several pain points. It executes countermeasures, ensuring product or service success by continuously monitoring progress and making necessary adjustments. 

Although Toyota is a household name, the company is not infallible. The brand is open to scrutiny, presenting them with opportunities for growth to arrive at a satisfactory resolution.

Like Netflix, Toyota leverages AI and machine learning to enhance vehicle safety design and reduce the likelihood of accidents. Less service and product problems mean less cost for the company. This undying commitment to its audience fosters customer loyalty across generations. 

Toyota's brand value is US $226 billion, despite a 4% decline brought by economic challenges in Japan and the international community. This is a testament to the company's ability to remain relevant despite adversities.

More Tips on How to Future-Proof Your Brand Relevance

Securing and increasing brand relevance is a gateway for companies to business growth and success. And foresight is necessary to anticipate market shifts and sustain long-term relevance.

Anticipate Market Shifts

Successful forecasting begins with a finger on the pulse. It’s essential to have a team of reliable data and market analysts who are market—and customer-obsessed.

To gather real-time data:

  1. Explore data analytics and market research tools like surveys, focus group discussions, and interviews.
  2. Try the customer experience delivered by your competitors and see what makes them unique.
  3. Tap your network and learn trends from industry experts.

Finally, run a sentiment trend analysis. Powered by AI, this tool allows you to learn how each customer segment thinks and feels about your company. It scans through comments, likes, reviews, etc., to unearth insights about what makes your customers tick. These data are vital in creating and developing strategic and achievable brand campaigns that stand out.

Sustain Long-term Relevance

An adaptable business and brand strategy is vital in surviving the constantly evolving market. That said, regularly review and integrate new approaches in your company’s brand campaigns and marketing efforts to keep it interesting.

Expand reach through digital channels and create a dynamic experience through immersive tools, such as augmented reality, AI, mixed reality, and animated user interfaces.

Join the league of successful brands when you work with a reputable brand design agency. Let the experts help create the perfect brand strategy to increase your relevance.