Silent difference between keeping, losing a customer

23 Sep, 2022 - 18:09 0 Views
Silent difference between  keeping, losing a customer

eBusiness Weekly

Leslie Mupeti

What do you think about when you come across the word Nike? Do you think about athletes, footwear, sports and the idea of pushing your limits? Their famous swoosh logo is instantly recognisable anywhere and their tagline, “Just do it” gives feelings of relentlessness and victory which is basically the whole point of sports.

Brand associations are images and symbols associated with a brand or brand benefit. An example is the Nike swoosh or the blue colour with Pepsi.

Brand association is a mental connection between a brand and a concept or simply put, the thoughts that come to mind when customers think about your brand such as “athletics” for Nike.

Associations are not reasons to buy but provide a differentiation that’s not replicable. Brand association can also be defined as anything that is deep seated in the customer’s mind about the brand. Attributes of the brand that come in their mind when the brand is talked about.

Brand associations are formed when customers interact with one or more of the following brand touch points: advertisements, word of mouth publicity, price of the brand, celebrity influencers, product quality, Point of purchase displays, product class etc.

Examples of brand associations include: BMW and driving performance or Apple and difference/creativity. A real world example would be when you think about your best friend. You might also think of their name, how their presence makes you feel, their hobbies and other people related to them maybe their parents.

The brain treats brands the same way. When your customers think about a brand they also recall the logo, product, memories of past interactions, how these memories made them feel and brand colours.

People are more likely to purchase your product or engage with your brand if it has positive associations for them. Being mindful and strategic about these associations will build brand equity efficiently.

A great brand association stimulates a positive emotional response in consumers. A survey by Netbase found that 68 percent of men and 64 percent of women said that they had experienced an emotional attachment for a particular brand. Also, 82 percent of investors say that name recognition plays an important factor in their investment decisions.

Importance of brand association

  1. Brand association fosters familiarity and reinforces recognisable attributes which encourage more brand loyalty and long term brand legacy.
  2. It helps customers recall your brand right away. Brand associations combine to make up your overall brand identity and so you want to create them in as many meaningful ways as you can.
  3. Brand association can help reassure potential buyers so that they feel confident enough to make a purchase decision.
  4. Brand association also helps differentiate you from competitors and create a positive image for your brand which will make people want to buy your products.

Brand association can be the silent difference between someone buying your product or a competitor’s.

Coca Cola

Their bright red logo is instantly recognisable and their marketing is top tier. They have made it a point to drive down their message of a smile and a refreshment in their marketing which has resulted in them having these two attributes as their brand associations.

One of the most powerful brand associations they have built for themselves is how they have aligned themselves with Father Christmas. Santa’s red and white outfit makes a perfect fit for the brand.

How to influence Brand Association

  1. Know your target audience

Think about the demographics of your typical customer. Collect information like their educational background, their occupation, concerns, salary, social media platforms etc.

What are their pain points? What do they want? etc

  1. Create a strong brand identity

Understand your mission, values, brand personality, positioning and voice. Understand how your brand identity impacts your logo and narrative. What story are you telling consumers about your brand?

Does the story elicit positive or negative associations? What about your messaging? Are you effectively communicating the value and unique qualities your brand

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has to offer? Are you using the right time? If your corporate voice is friendly, warm and reassuring then this will translate into the concepts, thoughts and feelings elicited in the minds of consumers when they think about your brand.

  1. Be consistent

If you frequently make changes to your branding, identity, logo or style of messaging then all you will do is confuse your audience. Build a strong brand association between your core messages and values and the visual elements of your brand then stick to it. This is the best way to stand out from the competition and build a strong customer base

Types of brand association

  1. Celebrity based brand association, for example Michael Jordan and Nike. Nike popularized the celebrity endorsement when they signed rookie Michael Jordan in a 2 million dollar deal.

The endorsement became so successful that it resulted in the spin-off Jordan brand.

  1. Founder based, for example Elon Musk and Tesla. It’s hard to think about Tesla without thinking about Elon Musk, the charismatic founder of the company.
  2. Character based, for example Marvel comics and their superhero characters.
  3. Word/tagline association, for example Nike and their “Just do it,” tagline.
  4. Luxury based association, for example Rolls Royce.
  5. Customer service based association, for example Amazon.

A solid brand identity is the best foundation for creating positive brand associations with your customers.

In conclusion, brand association is a mental connection a customer
makes between your brand and a concept, image, emotion, experience or activity.

This association can be immediately positive or negative and it heavily influences purchase decisions.

These associations form over time through consistent brand experiences and in big culture moments such as movies or hit songs.

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