November 17, 2015
It’s never pleasant to feel like you’re stuck. When you were little, chances are you hated having to wait for your parents to leave a dinner you were forced to go to. When you hit your teens, you didn’t like being forced to learn about an uninteresting subject in school. During college, you didn’t like being bound by pre-requisites that were completely unnecessary for your major. As an adult, some of you hate being stuck in a certain job or relationship.
It’s just human nature to become frustrated with things that you wish you could change but are incapable of doing so. When it comes to brands, it’s the same exact things. Consumers don’t like being stuck by brands, so if they get the chance to switch to another brand without many costs, they’ll do so.
Successful brands are able to avoid this. Instead of trying to capture the consumer with terms that will keep him stuck to the brand, the brand aligns its whole structure to deliver value to the consumer and generate positive emotional ties between the consumer and the brand.
Emotional ties are one of the most important driving forces when it comes to consumers’ purchase decisions and brand loyalty. A binding contract will keep unhappy consumers stuck, but a loving consumer will keep coming back regardless of a contract.
Brands should aim to be unique and admirable. Brands that create positive values and are dedicated to delivering true benefits to their consumers are the ones who are most likely to succeed.
Brands should see consumers as extremely valuable assets. In viewing and treating consumers like royalty, the brand will be able to create a positive emotional association. But emotional ties don’t come easily. Brands need to walk a fine line between caring about their consumers and being annoying.
There are some loyalty-inducing approaches that brands could take into consideration when they are trying to create these emotional ties. Consumers want to get some attention, but not enough to be annoyed. Brands should create frequent, pleasant, and habit-forming interactions with consumers. Even a small interactive footprint could be the beginning of great relationships.
Experiential marketing is an amazing tool to be utilized when it comes to building brand awareness. With a large focus on generating an experience to be associated with the brand, experiential marketing brings consumers directly closer to brands and their values instead of simply displaying products and allowing branding to take a backseat to product association.
A well executed experiential marketing campaign will communicate the full brand experience and entice consumers to take part in the brand culture by participating in certain promotional giveaways, games, or other challenges and activities, consequently connecting the consumer to the product as well.
By focusing first and foremost on branding instead of a specific product, any brand ambassador at the event will engage more deeply with the consumer, creating a natural connection to the product at hand by using the consumer’s positive experience. This experience will overtime become a strong emotional tie to the brand, allowing the brand to keep capturing value from a consumer who comes around voluntarily.
Outside of specific values that are unique to each brand, every brand should consider using a few tactics to gain consumer loyalty. Brands should be able to communicate an overall message of community, peace of mind, and passion.
Brands should try to place their core values on exhibit to accurately show their consumers that they are a community. By displaying what they care about, brands will gain consumers’ trust. This trust is the beginning of a feeling of community that will generate loyal consumers.
Peace of mind is also something that a lot of consumers place weight on. If they are able to purchase your product and maintain peace of mind, they’ll be ecstatic. Outline what factors of your brand connect directly to things that your target market cares about.
Something else that is excruciatingly important is showing consumers that your brand is passionate about something. Humans in general are attracted to passion and drive. Being able to demonstrate the conviction that your brand has toward a certain cause or goal will most likely encourage consumers to join the brand.
Instead of feeling stuck, consumers will start to appreciate having that relationship. Certain consumers will even defend your brand and introduce it to their friends. They will become so accustomed to the brand that it’ll become a heuristic of habit. Although these habits may take some time to build, they’ll be worth it in the end when your brand gets to enjoy happy and loyal consumers.