Creative thinking that delivers results

08 Feb

Tips for building brand loyalty in a digital era

Category: Branding
Written by: Ian Turner

The modern consumer has changed considerably in recent years. Nowhere is this more evident than in looking at the results from polls on brand loyalty such as one recently commissioned by Mintel. This one pointed to bargain shopping as the primary culprit for a drop in loyalty. So is brand loyalty really dead?

Value above all else

When it comes to brand loyalty, we can conclude that customers are much more price-sensitive today than ever before, which can clearly have a negative impact on loyalty. Bargain hunting was once an occasional activity but has now become much more mainstream, and some would even suggest ‘cool’. It’s now a highly accepted behaviour for consumers.

Thus, it’s become incumbent on brands to drive loyalty by proving that they are adding value to their customers’ experiences - by making them happier or more satisfied or by improving their quality of life. Brands can no longer rest on their past laurels when it comes to the value they deliver; they need to prove they’re still capable of supplying this every day.

How brands can nurture loyal customers

Brand loyalty is by NO means dead. Instead, the concept of loyalty has taken a dramatic shift in the past decade, much like many other aspects of business, marketing and the customer experience.

The shift in power from big brands to the individual consumer that was ushered in by social media, and which has become even more pronounced in recent years with the heightened influence of online reviews has created a very different playing field for brands. No longer do they wield all or even most of the power in their relationships with their customers.  So what can brands do?

Tips for building brand loyalty

To deal with the challenges created by our online, digital world, brands need to simply change the way they engage with their customers, adjust their expectations and approach and understand this two-way street creates different dynamics they must contend with. The following are some helpful tips to organically grow and strengthen your business’ brand loyalty.

·        Acknowledge the power and influence of consumers. Then make every effort possible to demonstrate complete transparency (and honesty) within your business.

·        Look at brand-building as a partnership with your best clients. Listen to them, engage with them and even thank them for their business and loyalty.

·        Use the internet to your advantage by actively cultivating brand advocates (i.e. influencers). Encourage their support by providing the tools they need to engage with their audience.

·        Don’t use tricks or gimmicks to foster loyalty with your customers. Be honest and upfront with them and you’ll be able to earn their trust and respect.

·        Have a solid, coherent marketing strategy in place that’s up-to-date and is reflective of your current brand and what it stands for.

·         In conjunction with the latter point, be sure that what you convey about your brand is very consistent in tone and approach. This consistency will foster loyalty.


These are but a few ways brands can create deeper, more meaningful and longer term relationships with their customers that will breed brand loyalty. The key is having a solid marketing strategy in place along with the goals of brand transparency and honesty. With these elements in place, brands can build the kind of loyalty that will be the envy of their competitors and others in the marketplace.