Only 9% of U.S. Consumers Say They’re Brand Loyal
Gone may be the days when 80% of a company’s sales were driven by 20% of its customer base. In new research by Nielsen, only 8% of global consumers are loyal to the brands from which they’ve always bought. In the U.S., the numbers are only slightly better, with 9% of U.S. consumers stating they are brand loyal.
More and more consumers are open to trying new brands and products. In the U.S., 36% of consumers love to try new brands and products and 55% stated they sometimes try new brands and products. Only a small portion (9%) stated they never try new brands and products. (Nielsen)
The reasons for trying new brands included value for money as a top reason for choosing a new product or brand (38%), while about one-third (32%) say price or promotion drives their choice.
How the Customer Experience Influences Brand Loyalty
Customer experience is also an important factor in brand loyalty. Consumers are more likely to be loyal to brands who provide personalized and individualized customer experiences. Consumers are more empowered today, shopping across channels of their choosing, researching before purchasing, shopping at any time of the day or night, price comparing, reading reviews and so forth.
They also understand that as they do this, they are leaving a digital footprint, information about their behaviors that they expect brands to collect. They believe this so much so that 63% of consumers agree that personalization is part of the standard service they receive and 61% assume relevant data about them will be at companies’ fingertips. Over half (53%) expect a brand to know their buying habits and preferences and be able to anticipate their needs.
When brands deliver, consumers are more loyal and will purchase more. The Temkin Group found that companies that earn $1 billion annually can expect to earn, on average, an additional $700 million within 3 years of investing in customer experience.
- 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for a great customer experience
- 73% of buyers point to customer experience as an important factor in purchasing decisions
- 65% of buyers find a positive experience with a brand to be more influential than great advertising (source)
Of course, when brands fail to deliver, the opposite is true. According to research by RedPoint, consumers report it is very frustrating when a brand sends them an offer for something they just bought (34%), sends them offers that aren’t relevant (33%), or does not recognize them as an existing customer (31%). And, more than 1 in 3 (37%) will go even further to stop doing business with a company that doesn’t offer a personalized experience.
Millennials and Brand Loyalty
Among millennials, brand loyalty may be even lower. Only 1 in 5 millennials describe themselves as being loyal to specific brands according to research by Morning Consult. The research found that most millennials either usually consider alternatives despite some brand preferences (48%) or simply don’t pay attention to brands (28%).
The biggest influence on millennials’ loyalty is reliability and/or durability, according to 68% of respondents. Other reasons include the quality is high for the price (54%) and as having positive interactions with the customer service team (50%). Regarding customer service, poor interactions would influence 74% of respondents to be less likely to purchase products from a brand they’re loyal to.
Millennials are also very social conscious and care about how a company treats their employees. For example, 7 in 10 would be less loyal to a brand if they found out that the brand doesn’t pay their employees well, and 69% would buy less from a brand if they learned that the brand relies on unethical labor practices.
Research by McKinsey also showed that consumers may not be as brand loyal as believed. After analyzing data, the research found that of 30 categories that were analyzed, just 3 were primarily loyalty-driven including mobile carriers (81%), auto insurance (24%) and investments (69%).
Across the other 27 categories that were analyzed, loyalty broke down as follows:
- 13% – loyalists, who didn’t shop around
- 29% – shopped around, but ultimately stuck with the incumbent brand
- 58% – switched to a different brand
Reach In-Market Consumers Actively Shopping for Products and Services You Sell
Companies can no longer rely on brand loyalty alone. By shifting strategies to prioritize spend on consumers actively in market, brands are more apt to covert shoppers into sales.
One way to reach in-market consumers is to utilize online browsing behavior. V12 provides a solution called V12 Signals Online, which is online behavior data collected in real-time leveraging a network to discover behavioral keywords, phrases, and terms. Using this intelligence, we are able to create formulas to classify in market purchase intent. The solution evaluates online consumption behavior on 91% of accessible devices in the US every month.
V12 also enables brands to reach consumers by mobile location. V12 Signals Mobile is a solution that enables companies to market to households expressing active intent to purchase based on their shopping behavior.
Specifically, we utilize geolocation data to identify in-market shopping activity. We then use our proprietary integration technology to identify the likely in-market household.
Unlike traditional mobile marketing, which only identifies the device, V12 Signals identifies households and the individuals in them. Our solution provides household contact information including a variety of consumer attributes.
In an age where brand loyalty is scarce, ensuring your brands is top of mind when consumers are actively seeking to purchase will bring in higher conversions and ultimately more sales.