Brand loyalty is an emotional connection between a consumer and a brand in which a consumer opts for the products and services of a particular brand despite having other (cheaper) alternatives. Loyal customers find their preferred brand offers better value/quality addition to their lifestyle than other competitors.
Repeat purchases of a customer from a business show his or her loyalty towards a particular brand. When businesses create a reliable brand value through their products or services along with customer service and branding campaigns, they build brand loyalty.
What is Brand Loyalty?
Brand Loyalty is consumers’ preferred inclination to repeat the purchase of a product of the same brand rather than going for any other brand. When a consumer is loyal to a brand, he/ she keeps coming back to the brand and makes repeated purchases. Brand loyalty can be drawn after referring to the purchasing pattern of the consumer.
In brand loyalty, people prefer to purchase a product of the same brand which they are using already, regardless of any change in price or convenience. These customers do not want to try any new product and want to stay on the same brand. In a highly competitive market, most businesses employ tactics to build brand loyalty. These tactics can include advertising and targeting the segments which are loyal and like-minded.
Brand Loyalty Vs Customer Loyalty
Brand loyalty is associated with customer perception and emotional connection while customer loyalty is related to customer spending.
In customer loyalty, brands can enjoy a loyal customer base by lowering prices or offering better discounts than competitors. While on the other hand, brand loyalty is not related to the pricing, and consumers would go for repeat purchases from the same brand even if their prices are higher than the competitors.
Importance of Brand Loyalty
Brand loyalty is essential for a company because it serves various benefits to the businesses. Some of the benefits of brand loyalty are:
1. brand loyalty can give a competitive advantage to businesses.
2. Repetitive buying of the product if a company achieves strong brand loyalty. This will ultimately bring higher sales and profit to the company.
3. With higher brand loyalty, it is expected that a loyal customer will make frequent purchases.
4. A company can enjoy a growing customer base, as the customer retention rate is reasonable and there are better chances of gaining new customers.
5. Brand awareness through word of mouth by the satisfied and retained customers.
6. Costless advertising through the medium of loyal and satisfied customers.
How to Build Brand Loyalty?
The best way to build loyalty for a brand name is to keep your customers close to the brand, employees, or services. However, building and then maintaining brand loyalty is not an easy task.
1. Deliver a Product that provides quality and value
To build brand loyalty, the first and best way is to deliver a high-quality product, and it includes everything that was promised while marketing. A company should maintain this quality standard so that the value offered will never be questioned. Try to exceed the expectation of the customers/ clients so that your customers will not try any other product.
2. Interaction with customers/ clients regularly
For building brand loyalty, a company should strengthen the bond between the company and its customers. A company can strengthen the bond by regularly interacting with the customers. A medium like social media can be used to inform the customers about the organization’s updates. Feedback is another way to have better interaction with the customers.
3. Consistency in Everything
A company should maintain consistency in everything, be it service delivery or quality. Not only with the services or goods, but a company should also stay consistent with marketing materials and tactics. The consumer should get the same feeling of familiarity with your emails, webpages, logo, community, rewards, behavior, etc.
4. Generate Word of Mouth publicity
Generate publicity with the strategy of words of mouth. When anyone else will talk about the company’s product, it can significantly impact a customer’s mind. Using this strategy, a company can contact media partners and other industry influencers to effectively promote the brand.
5. Better customer experience and service
A company can also use a combined effort of customer experience and service to have better brand loyalty. A company must be responsive to the queries and can use CRM systems to create better customer relations.
6. Provide Incentives for being loyal
Rewarding or providing incentives for loyal customers can be the best way to positively impact the customers. A company can send gifts, messages, or offers to thank the customers for their loyalty towards the brand. This tactic can be used by any company once or twice a year.
7. Stay Proactive
A company needs to stay proactive and always stay on-toes. A company should personalize every piece of marketing communication.
Why a Company Loses its Brand Loyalty?
For maintaining brand loyalty, a business must have continuous monitoring and research about the utility of the product. With this research, a business can identify the ways through which a consumer can get additional benefits and increase build loyalty. But when this research is ignored by businesses, and they ignore the consumer trends, the chances of losing brand loyalty increases.
A consumer doesn’t need always to choose your product if a company keeps things the same. For a business, it is necessary to analyze trends and modify the product as per the need. In real life, many companies lose their loyal customers because their products weren’t satisfying the customer’s changing needs. If a company believes that with a constant product, they can maintain brand loyalty, then the failure of the company can be possible.
Brand Loyalty Examples in the Real World
As one of the world’s most successful and profitable technology companies, Apple is responsible for more than 40% of the US smartphone market. The company enjoys 87% brand loyalty across the US and Europe. Offering top-quality premium products lets the brand offer customer value which is one of the key factors behind optimize loyalty.
As one of the top fast-food chains in the world, Domino’s enjoys a great base of loyal customers who prefer this brand’s pizzas over all the other brands. available in the market. Domino’s understood the need and wants of pizza eaters of different countries, and accordingly, it offers them a personalized experience. It offers different pizza menus in different countries. Domino’s also launched its loyalty program in 2015.
As one of the most popular e-commerce platforms, Amazon has differentiated itself from other competitors. Amazon offers the most personalized and convenient experience to its audiences. It offers ease of order placing and delivery to its customers. Even sellers also enjoy using Amazon, as it gives them a good commission and effective management.
As an online messaging platform, WhatsApp is an integral part of our daily lives. The trustworthiness and convenience that WhatsApp offers enable it to be better than all the other competitors in the market. Being able to ensure audiences about their privacy and offering ease in text and video messages let WhatsApp enjoy immense loyalty from its users.
5. Coca Cola
Coca-Cola Company enjoys the most powerful loyalty around the world despite the products and marketing efforts of Pepsi. As an iconic brand, it has exemplified brand loyalty throughout its 125-year history of market presence. It has maintained its loyal custom base even at times of economic downturns, global concerns over healthy eating and drinking habits, and changing consumption patterns.
The unique and personalized touch with top-notch quality has empowered Starbucks to consistently enjoy loyal customers around the world. They also revamp their loyalty program as per the need of their customers. In the year 2016, they came up with a value-based loyalty scheme that awards customers two stars when they spent 1 dollar, and then consumers who had 125 stars could redeem a free drink and food for themselves.
On the concluding note, we hope you would have understood that building loyalty is crucial for having loyal customers who keep on coming back to your brand and optimizing your profits and market presence. With a unique identity, trustworthy way of working, and transparent management, any brand can enjoy loyalty for their product or service.
Businesses can stand out from the competition by sharing their story in a compelling and convincing manner, plus they should also come up with great loyalty programs to beat their competitors. Branding, as well as marketing strategies, should also be made to nurture brand loyalty.
What factors do you consider most important for optimizing brand loyalty? Share your opinion with us in the comments below.
Pinky is an MBA in Marketing from the University of Mumbai. She loves helping people out in learning Marketing and sharing latest ideas and tactics for growing businesses.