Is a Brand Loyalist Ever a Bestie?

brand loyality and bestieThe small things in life we say always are the best. That special moment where a little bit of acknowledgment and praise goes such a long way. This we know but yet how much of this do we feel? In advertising and marketing,especially in social media, we listen and engage but how much do we feel?  Sure when our “friends” do something great we rush to congratulate them and then maybe ask a few questions and move on. Have we actually felt their success to the point of being genuinely happy for them and share their moment or is that inner pull of  “Geez, I did that or could do or should do that” tugging at us? What about in times of sadness and even loss? Do we feel more emotions than we would in times of happiness? What about for a brand, do we feel happy for them when they have record sales and pay attention to them more to be a part of them? Sure we do as this is what makes a brand even more popular and that is what they want us to do.

The Brand Emotional Connection

Brands want us to have an emotional connection to them whereby they are our one and only. In marketing, this is brand loyalty. In our personal lives, this is our close knit of friends whom some we call our “besties.” Our go to person who is not only there with open arms and but also ears. Brands strive to get us to have them be our “besties” so that when we shop we look for them and only them. Our go to brand as they have been reliable and good to us. Does a brand view their loyalists as being their “bestie?” Probably not as they are looking more for the grab and go.

As a business we want our target to only look at us and buy. As consumers, we want our brand to know that we can stray if someone else is offering something better, we can leave and brand switch. Sure there are some brands we will not stray from (ie me with Diet Pepsi over to Diet Coke) but does this mean that we will always buy? Do we sacrifice and deal or do we incorporate the no alternative and be that brand loyalist or bestie and walk away? Yes we do.

Does a Brand Feel Connected to US as a Consumer?

As a brand, you are advertising and marketing to garner results. Whether that be to achieve goals when introducing a new product line which is at an introductory stage of having us  meet you to gain awareness or for a push for direct sales, the campaign is set for results. Some brands are calling attention to specials or contests to entice the loyalist to be a part of what they are doing but they are also reaching out to the potential and new customers to have them become loyalists. Does this targeting make the brand feel a part of us or is it skewed to make us feel a part of them? We know, that it is probably the latter. When a brand talks directly at us we feel nothing for them but when they talk with us, we feel connected … but do they feel connected to us? Is the person behind the commercial, tweet, FB update really listening and engaging us or passing the time of day with blah blah blah?

Should a Loyalist be a Viewed as a Bestie?

Interesting question. Should you as a consumer be treated the way that you treat your best friend? Immediate reaction from some is “yes they better” but yet do they have to? Big brands have hundreds of thousands of consumers and how can they possibly know who is there bestie? Sure me and Diet Pepsi have had a love affair since the 80’s but are they bringing me over a 12 pack because I dropped one in the kitchen and 6 exploded all over the floor and the walls? No, but, would my best friend, yes. A brand cannot be all to everyone for the simple things but should they be  held to the standard of a bestie to always be there (great product, price that is right, replacing something damaged or faulty, etc).

Prior to social media it was never a question of being a bestie as our only voice was a letter which got opened in the mail room, but with social media we are able to interact in an open forum and be vocal on what is going on with us as it relates to their brand and how we want to be treated. A brand that is responsive and engaging is trying to ensure that we are satisfied but does satisfaction make us feel that they care? Zappos seems to think so. They listened and guided consumers to an easy purchase but an even easier return.  Is that feeling for the consumer? Yes as they depleted the 4 person transfer and the repeating yourself. Did they feel for the consumer, sure they did. Was every customer supposed to be treated as their bestie, yes, as when you do that, they not only come back they bring a few friends.

How much does a brand feel? So should a loyalist be considered or viewed as a bestie?

photo credit: Toshio

  • One rule when it comes to branding online is for us marketers include our customers in our campaigns. We let them feel that we are also part of their everyday life.

  • Mouli

    Yes but to what extent? Can we determine that as each person is different? Making people feel a part of something good is key and if they feel good about a brand they have no problem supporting it.

    thanks for dropping by and sharing your thoughts.