Definition

brand loyalty

Contributor(s): Scott Shadley

Brand loyalty is an emotional tie to a brand that leads to a consumer to continue and expand their purchases for products from the same brand. Organizations will use brand loyalty to drive additional purchases both with current products and across brand extensions.

Brand loyalty creates a behavior for a customer not only to perform repeat purchases for a product but also purchase additional products from the same company. Brand loyalty also creates a bond that inhibits a customer from buying products from another brand. In many cases, brand loyalty can override the downside of higher prices than similar products.

The value of a current customer may be higher than the cost of acquiring a new customer. Brand loyalty can also drive customers to be ambassadors for a brand as a result of them sharing their feelings for an organization through word of mouth.

Multiple factors can drive brand loyalty; including satisfaction with a product, trust for a brand (for example, a family has used it for 20 years) and aligned values with an organization (such as green products). For example, many Apple customers may be loyal to the passion behind creating innovative technology the late Apple co-founder, Steve Jobs had in the creation of Apple. Even if Apple makes missteps, customers may still purchase their products out of familiarity, emotional attachment, or their mission statement.                                                  

Brand loyalty creates a strong emotional tie, but this should not blind an organization to the thought that the tie will remain forever. Organizations must always continue to build on brand loyalty by staying ahead of consumer needs and emotions and continuously performing actions to drive brand loyalty.

This was last updated in March 2019

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