GTM Dictionary

The Go-to-Market Dictionary: Share of Voice (SOV)

Learn all about Share of Voice (SOV) in our comprehensive Go-to-Market Dictionary.

Are you familiar with the term Share of Voice (SOV)? In the world of marketing, it's a commonly used metric that measures the percentage of conversation your brand has in comparison to your competitors. Understanding your SOV can help you stand out in a crowded market, develop a strong brand identity, and improve your market share. In this article, we'll dive into the definition of SOV, its importance in marketing, how to measure it, and strategies for improving your share.

Understanding Share of Voice (SOV)

Before we dive into SOV, let's define it. Share of Voice is a metric that measures the percentage of media or advertising space a brand has in comparison to its competitors. It shows how much share of the conversation a brand has in a given market or industry.

Definition of Share of Voice

Share of Voice can be defined as the percentage of total advertising impressions or media coverage that a brand has in a specific market or industry. It's primarily used as a measure of brand awareness and how your brand is performing in comparison to your competitors.

For example, if there are ten brands in a market, and your brand has 50% of the advertising space, your Share of Voice is 50%. This means that your brand is dominating the conversation in that market.

Importance of Share of Voice in Marketing

While there are other metrics to measure brand performance, Share of Voice is crucial because it helps brands understand where they stand in their industry. It shows the conversation around your brand, your competitors, and your market. An increase in SOV implies a larger audience reach and more people talking about your brand. It achieves a multiplier effect on the success of other marketing objectives like customer acquisition, retention, lead generation, etc.

Moreover, Share of Voice helps brands identify gaps in their marketing strategy. For example, if your Share of Voice is low, it could be an indication that you need to increase your advertising spend or improve your messaging to better resonate with your target audience.

Factors Influencing Share of Voice

Several factors influence the SOV of a brand. The size of the marketing budget is a critical factor. Brands that have more significant marketing budgets can afford to invest in more advertising and media coverage, which can increase their Share of Voice.

The target audience is another crucial factor. Different audiences consume media differently, and understanding your target audience's media habits can help you allocate your marketing budget more effectively.

The market size and competition also play a significant role in determining a brand's Share of Voice. In a highly competitive market, brands need to invest more in advertising to stand out from their competitors.

Lastly, industry trends can impact a brand's Share of Voice. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, many brands shifted their messaging to focus on health and safety, resulting in a shift in Share of Voice towards those topics.

In conclusion, understanding Share of Voice is critical for any brand looking to succeed in their industry. By measuring their SOV, brands can identify gaps in their marketing strategy, allocate their marketing budget more effectively, and ultimately increase brand awareness and reach.

Measuring Share of Voice

In today's competitive business environment, measuring your brand's Share of Voice (SOV) is essential to understand your brand's position and compete effectively in your industry. SOV is the percentage of all the conversations happening in your industry that mention your brand. It is a crucial metric that helps you measure your brand's visibility and impact on your target audience.

Measuring SOV can also help you identify areas where your brand is lagging behind your competitors and take corrective measures to improve your brand's performance.

Traditional Methods for Calculating SOV

One of the traditional methods of calculating SOV is using survey data. It calculates the percentage of people that have seen or heard about your brand. Interviews, focus groups, competitor analysis, and market research are some of the techniques that marketers use to gather survey data. These methods provide valuable insights into your brand's perception in the market and help you identify areas for improvement.

Another traditional method for calculating SOV is by analyzing your brand's advertising spend compared to your competitors. This method is useful in industries where advertising spend is a significant determinant of brand visibility.

Digital Metrics for SOV Measurement

In today's digital age, digital metrics are becoming more popular for measuring SOV. Online metrics like website traffic, search engine rankings, social media shares, mentions, and referrals can help marketers understand the conversations around their brand. These metrics provide a more accurate and real-time picture of your brand's visibility and impact on your target audience.

For example, monitoring your brand's social media mentions and shares can help you understand the sentiment around your brand and identify areas where your brand is performing well or needs improvement. Similarly, tracking your website traffic and search engine rankings can help you understand how your brand is performing in the digital space compared to your competitors.

Tools and Platforms for Tracking SOV

Several digital marketing tools and platforms help measure and track SOV. Many marketing automation platforms, social listening tools, and marketing intelligence software offer SOV monitoring features. These tools provide valuable insights into your brand's performance and help you make data-driven decisions to improve your brand's visibility and impact.

Google Analytics is a popular tool that helps you track your website traffic and understand user behavior on your website. Ahrefs and SEMrush are popular SEO tools that help you track your search engine rankings and identify keywords that drive traffic to your website. Buzzsumo is a content marketing tool that helps you identify popular content in your industry and track your brand's social media shares. Brandwatch is a social listening tool that helps you monitor your brand's mentions and sentiment on social media.

Improving Your Share of Voice

Now that we've discussed how to measure SOV let's dive into strategies to improve it.

Your Share of Voice (SOV) is a critical metric that measures your brand's visibility and reputation in your industry. It is the percentage of the conversation around your brand compared to your competitors. Improving your SOV means increasing your brand's presence and relevance in the market.

Developing a Strong Brand Identity

A compelling and unique brand identity can help increase your SOV. A strong brand identity means having a clear messaging strategy, brand positioning, and visual identity. Your brand should be recognizable, and your messaging should resonate with your target audience.

Developing a strong brand identity involves understanding your target audience and what they value. You need to create a brand that speaks to their needs and desires. Your brand messaging should be consistent across all channels, including your website, social media, and advertising campaigns. This consistency helps build trust and credibility with your audience.

Your visual identity is also crucial in developing a strong brand identity. Your logo, color scheme, and typography should be consistent and recognizable. This consistency helps your audience identify your brand quickly and easily.

Creating Compelling Content

Providing valuable and unique content to your audience can help improve your SOV. Consistent content creation that aligns with your messaging strategy and promotes your brand can help increase engagement and new followers.

Creating compelling content involves understanding your audience's needs and interests. You need to create content that provides value to your audience and aligns with your brand messaging. This content can include blog posts, videos, infographics, and social media posts.

It's also essential to promote your content effectively. You can use social media, email marketing, and other channels to reach your audience and drive engagement.

Leveraging Social Media and Influencers

Social media opens the door to great opportunities to drive conversations around your brand. It provides a platform to share content, engage with your audience, and collaborate with online influencers. Influencers can increase your brand visibility and reach a new audience.

Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are powerful tools for building your brand's visibility and engaging with your audience. You can use these platforms to share your content, promote your products or services, and interact with your followers.

Influencers are individuals or organizations with a significant following on social media. They can help increase your brand's visibility by promoting your products or services to their audience. You can collaborate with influencers by offering them free products or services, sponsoring their content, or paying them for endorsements.

Utilizing Paid Advertising Strategies

Investing in paid advertising can help you reach a larger audience and increase your SOV. It allows you to focus on strategic platforms, audience, and messaging. Paid advertising includes pay-per-click ads, sponsored social media posts, display ads, and other digital advertising formats.

Paid advertising allows you to target your audience based on demographics, interests, and behaviors. This targeting helps ensure that your ads reach the right people at the right time. You can also track the performance of your ads and adjust your strategy accordingly.

Overall, improving your SOV requires a strategic and consistent approach. By developing a strong brand identity, creating compelling content, leveraging social media and influencers, and utilizing paid advertising strategies, you can increase your brand's visibility and reputation in your industry.

Share of Voice vs. Share of Market

It's easy to confuse SOV with Share of Market (SOM). However, they are two different metrics.

Differences Between SOV and SOM

SOM measures the percentage of sales in a given market or industry. It shows how much market share a brand has in a specific market. It helps marketers understand the potential share they can capture in a market. On the other hand, SOV measures the conversation and awareness level of a brand in comparison to its competitors.

How SOV Impacts Market Share

While SOV and SOM are different metrics, there is a strong correlation between them. A high SOV often means higher market share. When people talk about your brand, they are more likely to purchase it when they need it. A higher SOV also means that you have a deeper market presence, which translates into increased visibility and credibility.

Balancing SOV and SOM in Your Marketing Strategy

A healthy balance between SOV and SOM is critical to a successful marketing strategy. It's essential to understand that a high SOV doesn't necessarily mean a high market share. A brand can have a high SOV but low market share due to ineffective pricing strategies, poor distribution channels, or inferior product quality. Understanding the correlation between SOV and SOM helps you align your marketing objectives and build a solid plan that delivers results.


Share of Voice (SOV) is a critical metric for understanding the conversation around your brand, your competitors, and your market. To increase your SOV, you need to develop a strong brand identity, create compelling content, leverage social media and influencers, and utilize paid advertising strategies. By balancing SOV and SOM, you can achieve marketing objectives like customer acquisition, retention, and lead generation. Use the right tools and metrics to track your SOV, and adjust your marketing strategy accordingly. With a solid plan in place, you can improve your SOV and achieve marketing success.