December 11, 2012

Measuring Your Brand Recognition Online

By Ed Avis

Large corporations measure their brand recognition with surveys and consumer panels. These studies help them learn how their brand compares to other brands, and how loyal their customers are. But these are expensive, and may not be practical for smaller firms. Instead, many smaller companies measure their brand recognition by tapping social media.

There are many firms that help companies measure their social media interaction, but one I’m familiar with is Topsy. Topsy ( allows you to see how your brand (or company, or name, or whatever you want to track) is doing on the web, Facebook, and Twitter. It works especially well if you have a unique brand name – if your name is common, you’ll get a lot of unrelated information.

Another popular social media measuring site is Klout ( This uses information about the traffic on your Facebook page, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, foursquare, Wikipedia, and Klout itself. It computes a Klout score that shows how influential you (or your brand or company) is online.

Learning how your brand is faring among social media is interesting, but you’ll learn a lot more if you measure two factors: How your social media mentions track over time, and how your social media mentions compare to your competitors.

With that in mind, do two things before you start using the Topsy or Klout: Create an Excel spreadsheet or other database to track your own mentions, and make a list of your competitors and a spreadsheet for each of them. Topsy will be most useful for finding information about your competitors, because you can enter any company in the search field.

Now dive in and see where your brand stands online!

Ed Avis is the publisher of el Restaurante Mexicano. He has written about social media issues for small businesses for the past five years for various publications.

December 11, 2012