How did the events of 2020 affect brand loyalty? A new survey provides initial insights. Please note that The ARF will address this topic, in-depth, in upcoming research.
In a new survey of 1,500 U.S. consumers by Merkle, more than half (57%) of respondents said they stayed loyal to a brand, despite of the events of 2020. About half (49%) said those events hadn’t stopped them from purchasing a brand.
Among consumers who switched brands in 2020, 18% said their old brand was unavailable and 16% said a new brand offered a better discount or price than other options. Consumers can be persuaded to switch back, however, with 23% of survey respondents saying they would return to a brand if offered a discount. That response was more popular than making a product or service available again (19%), apologizing or explaining a stance on a public issue (12%) or providing information about how a brand bests its rivals (11%).
Eighty-one percent of consumers said they want to form a relationship with brands, a sign of their willingness to participate in loyalty programs. Discounts are the most popular loyalty reward, with 70% of consumers preferring these offers over free products (65%), free samples (51%), free services (48%) and a chance to win prizes (28%).
Consumers also like surprises, with 58% of them saying offers and gifts are the most important way for brands to interact with them and recognize their loyalty. Forty-one percent of people surveyed said it was important for brands to make the shopping experience more convenient, indicating that the pandemic’s disruptions to daily routines has people asking retailers to help make their lives easier.
Source: Williams, R. (2021, March 3). 57% of consumers remained loyal to a brand during chaotic 2020, study finds. Marketing Dive.