When a consumer is interested in buying a particular product repeatedly irrespective of any circumstantial or other changes, then it comes under the category of brand loyalty. For this to take place, the company has to maintain the quality of their products. Nowadays, shoppers do not compromise on the quality standards even if they have to pay a bit higher. The organization should also maintain its focus by providing incentives to the customers regularly so that they retain the faithfulness of their buyers.
True loyalty is tested during following circumstances-
- When the company increases the prices of their products and even then the consumer is willing to adjust the excess amount from his pocket.
- When the company starts offering substandard products and even then the consumer is willing to buy them without breaking his habits.
- When the company decreases the amount of the product, keeping the prices same and even then the buyer does not shift his loyalties even though it may prove a burden on his budget.
In most cases, the loyalty of a buyer is towards a particular product but some of the brands also have their own loyal followers. For example, a person drinking soft drink like Thumbs up will always buy the same drink rather than a Pepsi or Coca-Cola even though they may be giving some added incentives to buy their product.
Perception also plays an important role in determining the loyalty of a consumer. When a buyer is convinced that his choice is the correct one and he is buying superior products, then he will not shift his loyalty towards that product easily. For example, a homemaker buying Ganesh Maida will not easily buy the same product of Aashirvaad brand even though both the brands are equally popular.
What you can get from Brand loyalty
There are many advantages of brand loyalty and it plays a vital role in an organization.
- As the sales figures increases, the production cost decreases. This results in further addition of consumers as the company is able to hold on to their loyal customers as well as are able to include further buyers in their family.
- Organizations that are confident of the brand loyalty for their products are able to save money from their marketing budget. This money is utilized in different schemes to gather further consumers for their products. Thus, the company is able to include new shoppers for their products.
- Loyal consumers in it are the brand ambassadors of the products. The mouth publicity generated by them is quite affective and proves a boon for the brand.
- When a brand is assured of their customer base, they can experiment with price hike or make quantity changes. In most cases, the customers tend to stay with the existing brands as they become comfortable dealing with it.
- The main advantage of brand loyalty is that a company can introduce premium priced products, as they are secure in the knowledge that the buyer will not ditch them.
What are the downsides?
The main disadvantage of brand loyalty is that it does not allow heavy changes and if the company goes on to making substantial changes then the chances of losing the loyalty of the customers becomes higher. Therefore, we find that-
- Brand loyalty is a gift that has to be handled with care like a porcelain product.
- A customer can easily shift his/her allegiance if it is not in accord with the product.
- The pressure of buying generated by the numerous brands that are competing with each other tends to affect the mindset of the buyer. Thus, it becomes easy to shift loyalties in these circumstances.
In many cases, the shopper may prefer a product of one company and another product of different brand. For example, a purchaser may purchase a car from brand like Honda but may buy a motorcycle of a different brand like Bajaj or Harley.