Brand loyalty trends are evolving. Not so long ago, brands could rely on their products and services to do the talking. However, with increasingly oversaturated markets, brands need to step their game up to delight customers.
If your business expects to meet these demands, it’s important that you monitor industry trends and data and stay ahead of the curve. From loyalty programs to value beyond the usual discounts, here are some brand loyalty trends you can’t afford to forget.
- Establishing an Emotional Connection With Your Brand is Key
- Accessible Loyalty Programs are Non-Negotiable
- Offer Value Beyond The Norm
Establishing an Emotional Connection With Your Brand is Key
Emotion drives our thoughts, actions and purchasing behaviour whether we like it or not.
In a study of over 100,000 consumers, predicted intelligence company Motista found that customers who are emotionally connected to a brand have an increased lifetime value - a monstrous 306% higher than the average customer.
Customer lifetime value is an essential metric to monitor because it shows you how much revenue you can expect each customer to generate.
Apple is the perfect example of a company that harnesses emotions to create a connection. Their branding strategy uses clean design, simplicity and most importantly, promises a lifestyle along with it. This tantalises our most basic emotional need: to be part of something bigger than just ourselves.
Instead of mundane press releases, the tech brand fosters a sense of mystery for every product launch, building anticipation for each unveiling. Apple isn’t just a brand with nice shiny phones, it’s a cultural movement that appeals to our fundamentals as people.
If your brand can create memorable interactions through experiential marketing and activations, customers will be much more likely to buy from you again. When you include them in something engaging, this increases that lifetime value and positively impacts the way they feel about your brand - 91% of consumers can happily testify to that.
Accessible Loyalty Programs are Non-Negotiable
Don’t have a loyalty program? You’re missing out. Over half of your loyal customer base would join if you did. Adopting a customer loyalty program is a great way for your business to retain loyal customers.
Even if you just start by offering discounts or free shipping, these incentives increase customer satisfaction and entice them to shop again. Loyal customers contribute more, so why not give them a reason to?
If you already have a loyalty program, how can customers claim rewards and level up? Most of the time, these are only accessible through your website (and aren't optimised for mobile at all).
More than a quarter of shoppers polled say their biggest frustration with loyalty programs is the disconnect - they can either use points in store but not online or vice versa. Omnichannel data captured from both avenues helps you to drive personalised communications.
To avoid customer frustration and harness invaluable data, counteract this by creating an app - 75% of consumers said they would engage more if their loyalty program platform was mobile-friendly. Coffee giants Starbucks have nailed this so next time you want your caffeine fix, download the app and see for yourself.
Offer Value Beyond The Norm
Price is always going to be a factor for consumers on the prowl for a new product. But shoppers who really love your brand and everything it stands for will be looking for something more - from you.
One intangible benefit of loyalty programs is that it gives customers the feeling of being part of a community. Customers are always looking for more value from an offer and they’re willing to pay more to get it.
Think outside the box when it comes to earning points and redemption options. Consider offering points for customers who engage with your brand by following your social media, signing up to your newsletter or leaving a review. Invest in the look and feel of your program too.
Branding can go a long way towards making customers feel like they belong to a community. However, it doesn’t just stop there. Consumers expect more from brands in general. Personalisation is key, even if it’s just product recommendations based on previous purchases. The start of the new decade saw chatbot technology gaining substantial interest.
It’s expected that chatbots will soon become pivotal to efficient customer engagement. In fact, by 2020, customers are expected to manage 85% of their relationships with brands without the need for humans whatsoever. You’re not out of a job just yet; chatbots are there to enhance your engagement efforts and are most effective in situations where a customer is trying to resolve FAQs and minor issues.
With brand loyalty expectations shifting, you need to know you have the finances to create compelling campaigns and programs to entice consumers back for more. Increasing brand loyalty starts with working out how much you have to dedicate to it.
Use Our ROI Budget Calculator to Enhance Brand Loyalty
When you have solid figures and budgets in place, you can work out what you can dedicate to your brand loyalty schemes and engagement strategies. It’s not always simple to see how tiers on a loyalty program and social interactions translate to ROI. You can use our handy little budget calculator so you can justify future branding budgets.
It’s easy to use and gives you clear figures to take away. Try it out below.