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Consumers’ consideration of a brand: how to define it?

Today, it is consumers who dictate their vision of brands. In this context, how can we evaluate the preference they have for brands? How can we define brand consideration? That's the question asked by Eléonore Papeix, an expert at Strategir.

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The multidimensional nature of the term “consideration”

Brand consideration is a topic which itself is a matter of debate. Is it a univocal term, understood by all, and understood in the same way by all? Is it even a “consumer” term?

Although not all of them are synonymous, the Strategir research teams prefer the terms attraction, desirability, recognition and even recommendation.

This observation highlights the difficulty of defining and measuring consideration for a brand in a qualitative discussion guide or a quantitative questionnaire, insofar as its definition is not clear, and also underlines the multidimensional aspect of the subject:

  • Consideration of a brand by a consumer
  • Consideration throughout the customer experience, at every touchpoint from the beginning of the relationship
  • Consideration or reward for longer-term loyalty
  • Consideration as an employer brand

If the marketing funnel is often represented by an inverted pyramid (or funnel), it should be imagined here as a virtuous circle. Indeed, the consideration shown by a brand to its customers can incite them to re-purchase, to multi-equipment, to loyalty, but also to word-of-mouth. This feeds the top of the funnel and supports the commercial objectives: up-selling, cross-selling and/or recruitment.

Brand consideration needs to be explored and approached holistically

Consideration is rarely at the centre of marketing issues. There are many other topics that take priority:

  • Understanding customer expectations
  • Innovation
  • Brand image
  • NPS (Net Promoter Score)
  • Construction and testing of offers
  • Communication tests.

However, the subject of consideration is often related to these notions. When it is addressed, consideration is studied either at the top of the funnel (one indicator among others in brand tracking), or at the bottom (through the customer experience and often through the NPS (Net Promoter Score) measurement, and rarely both.

Consideration remains difficult to explain and measure

As with all marketing research indicators monitored over time, variations in consideration generate fluctuating feelings: disappointing if they do not move, difficult to explain if they fluctuate. This reality holds even more importance given the inherent challenge of defining the meaning of the subject.

Here are some examples of the consideration of KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) or brand performance indicators:

  • What are the drivers of consideration? The links, measured statistically (via Bayesian networks for example), are sometimes tenuous with other image items.
  • What is the share of brand awareness? How much of this is related to the link between the brand and the consumer (desirability of the brand for the consumer, adequacy between the products of the brand and the needs of the consumer)?
  • How much of this is emotional (brand imagination) and how much is rational (price competitiveness, accessibility of agencies, etc.)?

Does this consideration cover the same scope as brand preference?

Finally, can we approach this notion through a single question (and which one?) or do we need a composite indicator?

Is it even a concept that can be reliably tracked over time, explained and acted upon?

Or should it be integrated into the questioning to be used as a sorting variable (those who consider versus those who do not consider), rather than focusing on the evolution of the rate of those who consider?

Consideration approached from the angle of loyalty

To overcome these difficulties, brand consideration is often addressed from a loyalty perspective.

Consideration is a subject that is increasingly addressed by brands in order to counter attrition or churn (lost customer rate). Rewarding customer loyalty is part of the recognition of the individual, via high value-added or more symbolic evidence. In any case, the important thing is to prove to the customer that they are noticed and recognized individually.

Strategir is on your side to address these fundamental questions for your brand and thus cover all your needs and issues.