How to Build Your Brand Loyalty
Table of Contents
In the marketing world, we always hear about ‘branding’ and ‘brand awareness’.
But one side of building a solid brand that isn’t mentioned as often is brand loyalty.
Brand loyalty is a powerful asset for businesses to have, and with 72% of global consumers having loyalty to one or more brands, all it takes is the right brand and marketing strategies to achieve.
But what actually is brand loyalty, and how do you encourage your customers to be loyal to your brand?
I’ve detailed all of that and more in this blog post!
What is Brand Loyalty?
Brand loyalty is where you build up a level of loyal repeat customers that actively choose to buy from your business again and again. Brand loyalty is the culmination of great marketing, products, and customer service and typically occurs in three different ways.
There’s Attitudinal Loyalty, where customers have positive attitudes towards your brand that they don’t have with others.
Behavioural Loyalty is where your customer’s repeat buying habits are created by a routine need for products and convenience rather than emotional and positive perceptions of your brand.
And finally, there’s True Loyalty, a combination of Attitudinal and Behavioural Loyalty, where customers make repeat purchases because of their emotional connection to your brand, the convenience you offer, the ease of transaction, and the quality products you offer.
True Loyalty is the strongest and most valuable type of brand loyalty that a business can have, and it’s harder to break than the other two types.
Why is Brand Loyalty Important?
When your customers are loyal to your brand, they tend to place more trust and belief in what you do.
Whether they trust in your products and their quality or believe in your brand mission and what you stand for, it leads to a few things; more repeat business, revenue increases, and more customer referrals and recommendations.
Some consumers are so loyal to brands that they even defend them from negative criticism and promote their products for free through user-generated content on social media – that’s the power of Brand Loyalty!
How Do You Build Brand Loyalty?
There’s no ‘one size fits all’ approach to building brand loyalty, and with different businesses targeting various audiences and working in other industries, what works for one company, may not work for yours.
That being said, there are a few key factors of your customer experience that you should focus on if you want to build more trust with your audience and create a loyal following of customers.
Deepening your brand awareness
What many businesses don’t realise when it comes to brand awareness is that it’s not just about promoting your company name and your products; it’s about what your brand stands for too.
Your business’ mission and the values you stand by are important factors in brand loyalty, so don’t just share who you are and what you do; share why you do it!
Creating a deeper level of brand awareness and the environmental and ethical values you practice can help to build stronger emotional connections with your online audience and existing customers.
Creating positive brand associations
To create loyal customers, you need to leave a positive impression on them, which you can do in a few ways:
- Ensure your products & services are of high quality and standards
- Personalise their customer experience to create positive emotional connections
- Provide quick turnarounds and excellent customer service
- Demonstrate social responsibility by being environmentally friendly, ethical and sticking to your values
- Deliver great marketing campaigns, whether through content, social media, ads, physical marketing or other channels – thinking outside the box with your marketing can leave a bigger impression than you may realise!
When you can nail all this, you’ll be far more successful at building brand loyalty with your customers.
Product testing and improvement
As I mentioned above, providing high-quality products and smooth and effective services is vital for building positive brand associations in your customers’ minds.
But how do you know if you’re not providing that? And what do you do about it?
Reaching out to your customers for reviews and product/service feedback can help determine whether your customers positively perceive your brand.
If your offering quality and effectiveness aren’t up to scratch, you can use your customers’ thoughts and feedback to tweak, improve, and roll out better products and services to build and reinforce positive customer experiences.
Plus, showing your customers that you care about the quality of your products and how they perceive them, rather than just selling any old rubbish for profit, will help too.
Sending out offers and rewards
Another great way of building brand loyalty with your customers, and even with people coming across your brand for the first time, is to send out personalised offers and rewards and do the occasional giveaway.
For example, you could set up an automated email offering all customers a personalised 10% discount code for their first order when they create an account.
If a customer completes a product feedback survey with helpful insights that you can use to improve your product quality, send them a little thank you, whether it’s £5 off their next order or even just a Costa Coffee gift card – little gestures can go a long way!
For people coming across your brand for the first time, doing giveaways across social media channels is a great way to increase brand awareness and strengthen brand loyalty with long-time followers. It’ll also help you reach new audience members, with more current followers sharing your content.
The giveaway doesn’t have to be anything massive. Let’s say you run a clothing brand; you could select ten different products across your range, including some of your top sellers or even older stock you still have, and give it to one lucky follower on your socials.
Amazing customer service
Brands that go above and beyond to fix their customers’ issues and genuinely care for their customers’ happiness are far more likely to build brand loyalty.
If I’ve ever had an issue with a company’s product or service, and their customer support has been exceptionally helpful and fixed it quickly with apologies, I’m often left happy and reassured that the brand is trustworthy and cares about my experience as a customer. That means I’m more likely to go back and buy from them again!
Provide a slow or generally poor customer service experience, and your customer’s perception of your brand will go from bad to worse. If they then choose to share their experience online, it could also harm your wider brand loyalty.
Things That Can Harm Your Brand Loyalty
Starting with the obvious candidates, doing the reverse of some of those things I’ve listed in the last section could damage your brand loyalty.
Things like poor quality products, just promoting your products 24/7, and bad customer service are all things to be avoided.
But what else can harm your brand loyalty?
Lack of Brand Consistency
As I mentioned at the start of this blog post, people become loyal to your brand not just because of what you do but also why you do it.
If you’re not sticking to your brand values and some of the ethical and environmental processes that your customers love about you, then it can weaken their loyalty.
Let’s say a big part of your brand’s mission is to reduce the environmental impact and waste that your industry causes – it doesn’t matter what industry you’re in; this is something a lot of your customers can get behind.
If you start shipping out products in non-recyclable packaging or using excessive amounts of packaging for tiny products (just like a very well-known online retailer tends to do), it’ll go against the environmental values you stand for, and it could affect the connection that your customers have with your brand.
Lack of brand consistency could also mean changing your brand styling and values too often.
Your branding should be instantly recognisable to your long-term, loyal customers. When you build a following of loyal customers, they’ll see your branding not just as a logo or a business but as what your brand stands for and the positive perceptions they have of you.
If you change that branding too often, you can weaken that level of brand recognition, and if you change your mission and values along with it, it can destroy the entire reason they’re loyal to you in the first place!
The saying “All publicity is good publicity” is just flat-out wrong.
If you make some serious mistakes with your brand or products, there’s a risk of bad publicity damaging your brand loyalty.
Often, this isn’t even caused by a brand or anything they’ve done. Sometimes the actions of the brand’s owners, employees, or even just influencers associated with the brand can negatively impact brand loyalty.
Just look at the recent viral controversy that rapper Kanye West caused. After spouting his very out-of-whack and antisemitic views across Twitter, he’s likely caused massive damage to the brand loyalty of his shoe brand ‘Yeezy’ and posed a massive risk to brand partners, like Adidas, causing them to cut all ties with him.
Even unrelated brands like Sketchers were at risk when Kanye turned up unannounced at their headquarters, trying to pitch a partnership shortly before being escorted out by security.
So, not all publicity is good publicity. Most of the time, bad publicity is just bad publicity, and it can affect more than just your brand loyalty.
Lack of innovation
Your audience’s interests and requirements, along with market conditions and trends, are constantly changing.
If you fail to adapt to the changes happening with your audience’s needs and behaviours or the changes to your market, it may result in loyal customers going to your competitors instead.
Going back to product feedback and improvement, if your customers are expressing issues with your products or services and you don’t work on product innovation to make them happier, they’ll go to another brand.
So, when collecting customer feedback and constructive criticism, make sure you’re acting on it by improving your products and processes. This’ll help keep your customers happy, fulfil their needs, and avoid damaging brand loyalty.
Adapting to market changes
In terms of market changes, let’s use COVID as an example.
When the pandemic hit, and no one could get out to the shops due to the lockdown, brands started to turn their focus to eCommerce stores and investing in Digital Marketing.
The brands that didn’t, well, not many of them will be around today. Why? Because even though they may have had loyal customers, they failed to adapt to the market’s changing needs by not launching eCommerce stores.
By not giving their customers the convenience of placing orders online, they likely lost a lot of customers, with many going to their competitors instead.
Brand loyalty can significantly impact your brand awareness, customer retention rates, and overall revenue.
To build strong brand loyalty, you need to provide excellent products and an unmatched level of service, and create emotional connections with your existing and potential customers by standing by your brand values and mission.
If you can nail those areas, you won’t just have more loyal customers; you’ll have a stronger foundation to expand your audience and grow your business.
Want a free review of your branding and marketing?
Is your branding and marketing strategy creating loyal customers? Come into Damteq HQ for a Free 1-2-1 Growth Workshop and find out!
In your tailored, 90-minute workshop, you’ll sit down with Damteq’s Founder, Adam, and a few of our Digital & Growth specialists, where you can get some game-changing tips and advice on how to fix your marketing and set your business on track for massive growth.
The entire session will be entirely built around your business and the challenges you face, and you’ll also come away with:
- A free website and user experience review
- A free Google ranking audit report
- Advice on the latest and greatest digital trends and tools
- Advice on how to generate leads for your business
- Marketing strategy guidance based on your specific challenges and goals
We’re booked sessions over the next few months with limited availability, so give us a call to get booked in!