Marketers Celebrate Brand Loyalists

BY Kathy Crosett
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For many brands, the new marketing model is a joint effort undertaken with the help of  core loyalists. Marketers who haven’t tapped into the power of these brand evangelists may be making a New Year’s Resolution to start celebrating these consumers. At a recent ad-​tech conference, Executives  womenshoppersfrom Expo Communications and Geometry Global noted that up to 25% of all shoppers fall into this category. Eric Schaal, who covered presentations from these companies, writes that loyalist actions and opinions can make a big difference in a retailer’s bottom line.

Marketers who want to court ‘brand-​connected consumers’  (BCC) should know that about 60% of this group is female and between the ages of 18 and 34. In addition, about 80% of these shoppers are big digital media users. That means they are posting pictures and videos of products they like online.  About 30% of these folks post daily. They’re frequent shoppers and proud of their ability to influence what their friends and family members buy. This is great news for marketers, especially those which sell the products these shoppers enjoy purchasing.

Connecting with these shoppers can be particularly important when marketers are rolling out a new product or service. Ken Madden, head of digital North America for Geometry Global, Dallas, TX, says BCCs really “want to know about the latest technology.” These are the kind of people who will quickly spread the word on a social network.

However, attention from a BCC can be a double-​edged sword. These shoppers crave attention or some kind of acknowledgement for their support of a product. They’re particularly harsh with a marketer if their complaints are ignored. And, 56% of complaint cases are ignored. That kind of response from a marketer will cause over 70% of loyalists to take their business elsewhere.

Some marketers may be tempted to ignore brand loyalists, feeling the interaction with them may cost more than it’s worth. However, watching the BCC activity online and celebrating them, or rewarding them, is more likely to lead to improved reputation and sales in the long run.