Remember the crazy blind loyalty of a lot of Apple iphone fans dated back at late 2014? The whole world queued up on the streets for Apple iPhones outside Apple stores. The brand handsets winning fever urged millions to become the first owner of the first ever new handset in London, Sydney & Tokyo. The brand status symbol generated a strong enthusiasm that made them set up camps & tents outside the stores waiting eagerly for their first ever iphone! Mad! Such was the craze.
No wonder, smartphone users have countless options and choices of price flexibilities. But, why such brand obsession? And what’s making them act upon such behaviour of brand obsession?
Well, statistics & facts prove that it’s all in brand chemistry.
- 78% brand fans claimed that they even cannot imagine their life with a different phone other than the iPhone.
- 52% fans reported to be “really impressed” with the iPhone”. While another survey revealed that 17% user switched to iPhone from Blackberry, 4% from HTC, 9% from Samsung and 2% from Sony Ericsson.
- Certain fans even can’t imagine a day without iPhone
The above stats & facts are the results of extensive research that indicates three important factors of brand phenomenon.
Attention to detail –
Apple’s formula-“Think different” than other brands leveraging the fact- customer experience is the key.
This exactly reflects when it appears “sounds right”, “functions right” when you use it. Of course, credit goes to smart and uniquely integrated features that offer an advantage in itself over the other brands. Let customer experience speaks for them. This has enabled them to identify their own sense of self within the product. And for Apple, a very good job to establish its self-identity!
Level of brand service
Of course, the secret behind this strong relationship is not the result of efforts in one day. A lot of underlying factors- product value-perceived and tested, high level of commitment, high customer service level, and the fulfilment of trust as a brand put by the customers over the company have made it up all!
As the social identity theory states,” a brand’s self-image is defined in social group has rightly been used by Apple for creating the buzz. Apple was dominating the media with product features and new launches playing with the word of mouth to their advantage. The result? Show-off factor exaggerating a style statement for those who appreciate the best! Third party users touted Apple’s brand products that made a huge impact on customer sales. A huge demand of the product driven by an illusion of scarcity of stock added further boost setting a record of huge first-day sale!
To put it simply, the ingredients of a great brand are marketing, brand image and ease of product use culminates into one brilliant trustworthy brand image- Brand love. And to make your customers fall in love with your brand, you need to know what makes your customers tick. This is brand chemistry that every marketer should first work on even before launching a brand project.
It is true that technology has made both consumer’s & brand’s life easier with enormous potential to access numerous brands by consumers while linking an extensive consumer segment by brands. Today, it’s hard to believe our life without any brand that is intertwined with our beliefs, preferences and attitudes. An obsessive branding behaviour is the future of branding today. This has led brands into tough fights to emerge as heroes onto the eyes of the customers.
Over 75% of brands are meaningless to most consumers that are suffering from threats of existence in near future.
This is clear from the fact that consumers don’t care about brands that expire. Today’s consumers are more into sending messages to brands that can help them throughout their buying journey rather than making unfulfilled promises that matters the most. Sadly, these brands follow a rather straightforward approach, unlike high-throughput method based on consumers’ behavioural cues. At this juncture, how will brands diagnose their changing behaviour & actions & fix the reality at the backdrop of branding, as expected by consumers?
To answer this here are a few legitimate assessment points that marketers can self-check before launching their branding campaign.
- Is your brand just a brand name? Is your brand likeable enough to pull relations from customers that can establish a loyal customer base? Do you focus more on transactions or brand relation?
- Is your brand into social listening-collaborating with them and innovating strategies together? Is your brand sensitive towards market demand and customer response? (To name a few brands that re-invented themselves – Yahoo, Nascar, Amazon)
- Is your brand aware of all possible touchpoints to boost customer experience rather than a stereotype customer service call centre for first hand understanding? Does your brand deliver its brand promise across all touchpoints or phases of sales cycle (pre-purchase, purchase and post-purchase)?
- Do you emphasize more on reshaping and optimizing customer experiences rather than tracking your research metrics?
- Is your “call-to-action” enough to justify customer engagement or you implement diverse pathways to trigger actions for continued customer engagement?
- Is your brand health study prompt enough to quickly act and implement new strategies as soon as the market report is generated?
If your answer is yes for most of the assessment points above, probably you need to re-think your brand strategies once again! Many a times, brand health studies generate late reports that demean the impact of the action taken by the time it is applied. So brands beware! The right action at the right time can make a significant brand impact upon your customers! Striking the right brand chemistry with customer depends upon figuring out the right strategy that aligns rightly with digital transformation, spurring consumer responses.
Multi-channel customers are changing, so should brand behaviour and actions. It is time that brands should capitalize on dynamic actions rather than conventional or static behaviour that matters the most to customers and generate a value through brand actions. This will be achieved if brands act in a more authentic way creating a distinctive point of differentiation from their competitors. Marketer’s language of communication with the consumer should instil human behaviour rather than corporate behavioural cues to build innovative brand-consumer behaviour.
Brands need to think, re-think & act upon their strategies of inter-connectivity that focuses on value creation rather revenue extraction.