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What is Brand Loyalty and steps to increase Brand Loyalty?

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Brand loyalty takes place when a customer decides to repeatedly purchase a product of the same brand instead of a substitute product produced by a competitor.

Most of the times we see die-hard fans of a certain brand, or super consumers for certain brands like Apple Products, Harley-Davidson, and Royal Enfield. Brand loyalty is emotional attachment to a brand.
Management gurus have coined terms like “King Consumer”, “Lead Consumer”, and “Super Consumer” for a customer who is obsessed with a brand. They are not only heavy users of the product of a certain brand but also have a certain attitude towards it. They are also known as “High passion fans”.
These loyal consumers not only buy products for themselves but also influence everyone in their social circle to buy the brand they follow.

Creating a loyal customer goes a long way in providing a consistent and improved quality. The same has to be communicated to the customers through all the channels of communication.

Apart from the usage, forging relationship with such customers in beneficial for the organization in many ways –

• Loyal influence sales by word-of-mouth and many ways like flaunting the brand in social circle, etc.

• Their inputs are valuable in making product innovations. They come up with many ideas in making product improvements. Since they use the product regularly and heavily, they are the best source of information on making any improvements in the product.

• Because of various other inputs, organizations are greatly benefitted in improving their promotion strategy, delivery operations, pricing of the products and services associated with the product.

• An improved product and improved associated services (warrantees, service centres, replacements, repairs, product parts availability, etc.) basis the inputs from the super consumer help gaining market share and counter competition.

• Super consumers force an organization to focus on the core product and its features. Organizations sometimes start focusing more on the supply chain, operations efficiency, etc. and lose the focus from the core business of manufacturing of the product as desired by the customer.

• When a new product is launched under the same brand name, it is often accepted with enthusiasm basis the success of an existing product. The super consumer stays loyal for long, buys newly launched company products, regularly upgrades to a modified product. For example, die-hard Apple fans, upgrade to a new iPhone when it is launched instead of using the old model.

• Super consumers also pay less attention to rivals or substitute products from other brands.

• They are less price sensitive towards the brand. Even if the organisation increases the price of the product, the die-hard fans usually don’t pay much attention to it. Most of the organisations keep the price of their new launch products high to maximise profits from their super consumers. After a period of few months, the prices are slashed to attract early majority, late majority customers. (To study this category of customers, please see chapter Pricing Decisions,

• The organisation saves the costs of educating an existing customer as the purchases made are routine. It is difficult to convince a new customer. It requires both people (staff) as well as financial support to get a new customer on board.

An organization should study the reasons for their customers switching to other brands. They should invest in Customer Relationship Management.

For further reading, kindly check-

Explain the importance as well as the steps that an organisation should take for retaining existing customers and attracting new customers.

What is Customer Relationship Management (CRM)?

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