The Imminent Death of Brand Loyalty
In today's market of constantly changing consumer demands, companies struggle to keep up with fashion trends that seem to come and go in a heartbeat. Brands are finding it increasingly difficult to captivate their customers to build strong, long-lasting relationships, as brand loyalty appears to have become a thing of the past. As companies try to meet their quarterly financial goals, branding has become less about meeting specific consumer demands, but more about attempting to quickly generate revenue.
Although this strategy may seem to initially rake in the cash, it is bound to fail as in the long run as companies are unable to gain meaningful and lasting engagement from their consumers. This is known as "moment marketing", which often does little or none to fully develop a brand with a purpose. Consumers are unable to identify or connect with such brands. To engage today's consumer, it is essential that brands focus on interacting and developing menaingful bonds with their consumers to generate trust over time.
It's not easy to gain consumers' trust, though, as buyers' demands continue to change as they become more culturally diverse. Consumers are no longer brand loyal. They may be dedicated to a certain aspect of the engagement experience that one brand offers, but once the initial interest dies out, so does the buyer's relationship with the brand.
We live in an experience and novelty driven time. Consumers seek experiences that satisfy their needs for different stimulations, so brands that focus more on generating profits rather than attempting to engage with their consumers will be short-lived. For example, people will mention that they like items from certain brands, but if the clothes or shoes they produce aren't in, the consumers quickly move on.
In a sense, brands are an extension of our lives, and if the brand's purpose or message doesn't fall in line with what we like, our loyalty goes away. Consumers want brands to assure them that they add value to their lives, and if they don't get that, companies will certainly feel the consequences.
There's no secret as to why large companies such as Nike and Starbucks have been successful for so long. They've made their respective brands part of the daily lives of their consumers, and share their experiences with each other. They don't try to position themselves in the market. Instead, they are the position.