How Audience Analysis Strengthened Brand Authenticity

Incorporating the Arts Helps Gap Appeal to Customers

Today consumers are bombarded with hundreds if not thousands of products and services on billboards and TV, in print, and on the web. While some advertisers rely on flashy advertising and outrageous discounts, others take a more subtle approach. One way to attract customers without aggressive advertising is to create brand authenticity.

Advertising and marketing experts offer plenty of advice on how businesses can build an authentic brand. The key to building a brand that consumers perceive as genuine, is that businesses know their audience. By understanding the interests of current and future customers, businesses can create products and advertising that capture these interests and separates the brand from passing fads and brands weakened by frequent changes in message.
One brand that has incorporated audience interests into their branding and advertising campaigns is Gap. The clothing and accessories retailer has created a strong brand identity that caters to youthful consumers who are interested in effortless looks that incorporate clean style and refreshing seasonal pieces.
Gap has actively built a brand identity that incorporates their distinctive style into their social media presence. Their Twitter profile tells followers to “Be confident in your style, be comfortable with yourself. #dressnormal”. Hashtags #styldby and #GapREMIXProject connect the brand to stylish outfits and innovative designers.

The #GapREMIXProject is one marketing campaign that is closely related to audience interests and is likely to contribute to brand authenticity. This assertion is supported by Affinities. Over the past three months, 13k Tweets were written about Gap. The people who participated in this conversation had many interests that related to the designer t-shirts.
The audience is 441 times more interested in Maria Kochetkova, Principal Dancer with San Francisco Ballet and new star of a Gap advertisement, 38 times more interested in GQ Magazine, and 13 times more interested in New York Fashion Week than the general Twitter audience. Not surprisingly, this audience is 1/2 times as interested in baseball and hockey, 1/3 times as interested in basketball, and 1/21 times as interested in soccer than the general Twitter audience.
While there is no doubt that GQ Magazine and New York Fashion Week are directly related to fashion, looking at the Segment Insights for Maria Kochetkova highlights common interests including the performing arts, theater, and fashion.
The Gap audience is also 7 times more interested in digital media than the general Twitter audience. In addition to common interests like content marketing and design, top influencers in the Digital Media Segment highlight Twitter profiles that may strength Gap’s identity as a clothing industry leader that incorporates modern style, culture, and the arts into its identity.
Creating brand authenticity is a challenging endeavor. Advertisers and marketers must identify consumer interests and consistently incorporate these into their brand identity through advertising campaigns and products. Gap’s continued dedication to casual style and the arts has allowed the company to create a strong brand identity that builds customer loyalty and attracts new customers who are interested in integrating Gap’s style into their lives and their closets.

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