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  • Writer's pictureAnpar Research

Brand Recognition: Definition, Importance & More You Should Know

Updated: Feb 22

A number of different walking coloured bags labelled with the name Brand, which is a great illustration of brand recognition

What is brand recognition?

Brand recognition is the degree in which individuals are able to identify a product or service with only visual or audio cues like jingles, logos or slogans such as “Just do it” for Nike. These various types of cues help the brand stand out from its competitors even when the brand name is not mentioned. This is regardless whether the individuals are customers or not, the brand is so distinctive with cues like the packaging, colours or shape that make the brand instantly recognisable to consumers.

Importance of brand recognition

Brand recognition is important because individuals can instantly recognise your brand and not only know what your brand covers but also what your brand stands for. This can only help to improve perceptions of your brand and increase the likelihood of purchase as your brand will be remembered in a positive light.

Benefits of brand recognition

Just to summarise the advantages of brand recognition includes the following:

  1. Consumers are more inclined to remember your brand supported by different visual and audio cues that help your brand stand out, so brand recall benefits from this.

  2. Gains a competitive edge in the marketplace by the brand being identifiable compared to other brands particularly if the brand is highly perceived.

  3. Can improve the perceptions of the brand if values are conveyed positively.

  4. Boosts brand equity, so having a higher brand recognition helps to develop brand value with consumers holding positive perceptions of the brand

  5. Increases odds of purchase as consumers remember your brand and may form part of their consideration set, when consumers are looking buy in the area that your brand covers.

  6. Enhances the marketability of the product in becoming a premium brand such as Apple, where consumers are more willing to pay more for an established quality brand that they perceive has a superior offering compared to the rest of the market.

How does brand recognition work?

How brand recognition works is by catching the attention and keeping a particular product or service in consumers’ minds with the use of visual and audio cues. This is normally the marketing department’s task to carry this out.

Businesses make significant investment with the objective in developing cues that represents the brand and is distinctive from its competition to catch the attention of their target audience and be memorable by utilising colours, slogans, jingles, logos, packaging and other features that forms part of basis of their marketing strategy. Then the hope is this will be noticed and remembered by consumers.

Examples of brand recognition

The following are well known examples of brand recognition of famous brands, which are split by common types of cues:


  • McDonald’s - the golden arches of McDonald’s is one of the most recognisable logos.

  • Apple – the half-eaten apple of the Apple brand is most identifiable across their product range.

  • Nike – the swoosh checked marked image that is taken from Greek methodology which signifies power, speed and movement, so is highly relevant to this sports brand.

  • Adidas – the three striped logo of the Adidas sports brand.

  • Starbucks – the green mermaid siren image of the Starbucks coffee brand that you will see around the world.


  • KFC – “Finger lickin good” is a key catchphrase of the fast-food brand.

  • Red Bull – “Red Bull gives you wings” is a well-known slogan of the energy drink’s brand.

  • Mastercard – “For everything else, there’s Mastercard” a catchphrase of an established and recognised credit card brand.

  • KitKat – “Have a break, have a KitKat” is the slogan for the popular chocolate brand.

  • L’Oreal – “Because you’re worth it” is a famous slogan of this cosmetic brand.


  • McDonald’s – “Ba da ba ba baaa … I’m lovin it”

  • Kellogs Rice Krispies - “Snap! Crackle! Pop! Rice Krispies”

  • Huggies – “Mommy wow! I’m a big kid now”

  • Coca Cola (80s / 90s) – “Just for the taste of it” or “Can’t beat the real thing”

  • Green Giant – “Ho ho ho, Green Giant”


Below are colours that are strongly associated with famous brands:

  • Coca Cola - Bright red

  • - Hot pink

  • Home Depot - Bright orange

  • Guinness – Black

  • Apple - White

  • Cadbury’s - Dark purple

How to measure brand recognition?

To measure brand recognition, questions are asked of respondents in brand research surveys or advertising research, where brand cues like logos or slogans are displayed and respondents are asked what brand they associate with them. Alternatively, a short video of brand marketing is shown and respondents are then asked what brand did they see and what else do they remember.

In this way, measuring brand recognition will allow businesses to track over time, how well the brand is recognised by people, which is a good indicator of the strength of your marketing and messaging that you can also compare against your competitors.

Brand recognition vs brand awareness

There is a difference between brand recognition and brand awareness but they are relatable to one another. Firstly, brand recognition is where consumers are able to identify a brand by the visual and audio elements without it being named. While brand awareness is where individuals can name the brand either spontaneously or after being prompted in association with a category of products or services.

You cannot have brand recognition without being aware of the brand first such as being able to name the brand after seeing a logo.

Building brand recognition

In order to build brand recognition, the audio and visual stimulus of the business needs to be consistently exposed to consumers, whether that be through variety of channels such as TV commercials or online ads and social media including the possible use of influencers.

For example, running a marketing campaign throughout the year will generally gain more brand recognition rather than running adverts around a big event that will only remembered for a couple of weeks.

The key aspects in building brand recognition are for the brand is to stand out and differentiate from others, be consistent in its delivery and target the correct audience.



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