Is there a brand you feel is this irreplaceable? A brand that, no matter what, will deliver for you and one you will always trust. Most of us do, and that is brand loyalty. I recently read The Brand Gap by Marty Neumeier. Branding is critical to any business. The Brand Gap presents a unified theory of brand building. Instead of concentrating on the strategic, or creative, aspects of branding, this book explains how both ways of thinking can unite to produce a “charismatic brand”—a brand that customers feel is essential to their lives. Neumeier defines it as, “A Charismatic Brand: any product, service or organization for which people believe there’s no substitute.” Simply, it’s a committed relationship, a safety blanket or, at the minimum, a constant that’s part of your daily routine. Brands that can achieve this level of brand loyalty will be able to demand a higher price and are better able to communicate with their customers.
Brand loyalty has been a very strong force in consumer behavior up until the “Great Recession”. The loyalty part is not dead; it’s just in hiding behind the miserable economy and all of the clutter that exists in today’s advertising world. Brand loyalists still buy Starbucks at $5 a cup. How has this brand become Charismatic and gained such loyal followers? It doesn’t happen overnight, and there are hundreds of elements that make up a successful brand – but it’s worth it. I spent an hour touring (visit if you believe in branding!) www.brandkeys.com. According to Dr. Robert Passikoff, President of brand research company Brand Keys, just a 5 percent increase in loyalty can result in as much as a 95 percent profit increase. So, no matter the upfront cost or difficulty, I’d choose brand loyalty any day.
So, the big question is, “HOW DO YOU DEFINE BRAND LOYALTY”? What makes you purchase a brand over and over again? Is it a brand you just really love? One you choose by default? Do you have loyalty to a brand at all? I find myself completely agreeing with Neumeier’s definition, that brand loyalty is a product you believe has no substitute. Ultimately, what drives these brands is – the consumers. Without us, they would not exist. And, without them, we may go insane. So, next time you’re at the store, think about your loyalty and reach for the brand that has always followed through for you.