The power of branding has become more evident in recent years than ever before. A brand of coffee is no longer just “a brand” it becomes “my brand.” In every category you could imagine, consumers are attaching themselves to what they believe are the heart and soul of the brands they love.
Brand loyalty isn’t something that can be generated in an engineering lab or strategically mapped out by a killer marketing team. Just like making friends in elementary school, the brands we become loyal to are steeped in a ton of other lifestyle choices and personal beliefs. Our environment, goals and even the brands we’ve already become loyal too will all impact the brands we choose to extend our trust to in the future.
As PR professionals, it’s our jobs to help build a bridge between the brand and the consumer. While we can’t force any kind of brand relationships to form, we can help our clients promote all of the positive attributes they already have, and keep those at the forefront.
Several brands are doing this very well, and have seen excellent results. Apple, for example, is a key player in the brand loyalty arena. It isn’t uncommon to see someone sitting with their iPhone, iPad and Macbook –not because that’s the most advanced technology, but rather because they are loyal to Apple. They’ve managed to create a lifestyle around their brand of choice. Recent reports state Apple’s brand loyalty is 87%. Whoa!
Aside from larger companies, smaller start ups are mastering brand loyalty in their early stages. One brand that comes to mind is Dear Kate. This new brand creates women’s apparel, and works hard to build that bridge between themselves and the consumer. Their blog does a great job at not only showing off their products, but telling a greater story that gives consumers something to connect with.
How can you build the bridge for your clients? How can you showcase them as a brand worthy of consumer loyalty? Maybe it’s through blog posts that showcase the lifestyle your brand contributes to, or showing off the philanthropic efforts of the company. Maybe it’s through content shared on social media, or even through events that give back. Whatever the medium, its’s up to you, the PR person to gather that material and build that bridge as best you can.