When working with clients, you are going to be asked how to increase brand impression share. Clients love seeing conversions and revenue but making sure that your brand name is on top of the search results is another important metric that could lead to sticky conversations. Increasing brand impression share is not an easy task because sometimes your impression share is in the high 90s and throwing more money at your AdWords’ Search campaign will not give you more clicks or conversions as your client might desire. What you need to do next is to pitch why your marketing strategy needs to work on awareness to allow more users to learn about your brand and eventually increase your brand’s impressions further down the road.

Marketers really love food, or maybe I just enjoy food a lot and retain all of the food metaphors and analogies. It is a common educational story that marketers will spend money to get their client’s name out there through multiple channels and all of these channels wonder who is responsible for helping that customer pick up that brand of potato chips at the grocery store. We are living in an age where we are spending so much time online and around 21% of that time we spend on searching for products and services we need. I am not knocking 21%, that is a lot of time to get your ads in front of people, but why should we not try and hone in on that other 79% and get these users more familiar with your brand. Let’s help your users pick your brand of potato chips the next time they are walking down the snack aisle instead of your competitors.


Let’ start with that 21% of online searches. Within your Adwords account, you have several campaigns that have different levels of the user’s engagement with the sale’s funnel. Brand is right at the bottom of the funnel because that user knows about your brand and they are actively targeting you for the product or service. For us to get more users to that lower level funnel, we are going to work with top of funnel keywords and convince them with the other 79% they are online that they should be typing your brand’s name in the Google search box.

For example, if I was interested in going back to school to become a nurse I would start my search with broad type keywords since I am still in the research stage. My first search would be very similar to “nursing school” or “nursing programs.” I might see an ad very much like the one below, but I would continue to search further for other nursing options.

While I am searching for nursing schools, I could get sidetracked and look up dates for the next Star War Movie Premier or look up ideas of what to cook for dinner. That’s when I made the switch from my 21% time searching online to 79% going to websites and browsing. This is the perfect time for this nursing search to hit me up on the display network.

Audience Targeting

I have written about audiences in more depth in the past, but the example listed above is a classic remarketing list which is how to target a very specific audience in the right time and right place to get your brand in the user’s face. When learning more about in-marketing, demographic, and affinity audiences, try and find how your messaging should cater to these audiences differently to increase your ability to engage with these new users. The importance of learning about the different types of audiences you could use helps uses your marketing budget more efficiently while also inviting new users to your client’s brand.

Display Advertising

Now that you have made yourself more familiar with the differences between all of the audiences, you can implement your brand awareness strategy by targeting the Google Display Network. You want to make sure that you are engaging these audiences, but implementing something as easy as frequency capping to how often the person can see your ad will help reduce any negative feelings towards your client’s brand. The goal is to make the user aware of your product, not make the person creeped out that they are being followed around the internet by your ads.

Full Circle

At the end of the day, the job of a digital marketer is to achieve metrics set by the client, but also to focus on future success by getting the client’s brand out and visible to as many eligible users as possible. If you are stuck just using the bottom of the funnel keywords and not utilizing the Display Network, you could be ignoring potential clients who are using the 79% of their time not actively searching for anything but are on the display network. Spend your time now making different audiences and test to see if there is a lift in your brand searches in one, two, or three months after implementation. You can also use negative audiences to limit who sees your ads to be the most efficient with your budget. By opening the doors to brand awareness today you could be increasing your brand’s impressions in the future and finding your next hungry client walking down the chip aisle reaching out for your brand of chips. Please reach out to me at @DianeChelius to talk more about your brand impression share strategies!