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    Trust and ‘feel good’ factor rank high in consumer loyalty, Intuit report reveals

    78% of Australian consumers will only purchase from brands that are trustworthy, while 88% have expressed a preference for brands that make them feel good.

    The Science of Loyalty report by Intuit, the financial technology platform behind Intuit TurboTax, Credit Karma, QuickBooks, and Mailchimp, examined findings from a survey of 4,000 consumers across the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

    It looked into consumer behaviour and insights marketers can take to build loyalty and cultivate meaningful relationships between their brand and its customer base.

    The Intuit report also revealed ease of purchase was the top brand association for Australians, with 97% of repeat purchasers saying their preferred brand makes it quick and easy to purchase, a cost-effective solution to the rising costs and resources it takes to acquire new customers.

    Michelle Taite, chief marketing officer at Intuit Mailchimp, said: “Loyalty is more important than ever.”

    “Our study found that 78% of Australian consumers will only purchase from brands that are trustworthy, highlighting the significance of establishing a strong connection while guaranteeing credibility. However, surprisingly, only 50% of shoppers expect brands to reward them with deals and discounts, highlighting the changing patterns of consumer loyalty.”

    “In today’s ever-changing business landscape, characterised by overwhelming amounts of data and endless options, brands and marketers should be equipped with the tools and resources needed to build marketing strategies that make an impact and build meaningful connections that drive loyalty with their customers,” added Taite.

    The Commitment Spectrum

    The report also found that consumer loyalty falls on a spectrum, ranging from inert, habitual, dedicated and fandom.

    What many brands and marketers view as the pinnacle of loyalty – fandom – is characterised by a strong emotional bond and shared values amongst the brand’s community. According to the Intuit report, only 13% of global respondents belonged to the fandom loyalty group.

    Experts like Richard Shotton, author of The Illusion of Choice, have cautioned that such affiliations can be extremely hard to cultivate and may not make sense for every brand. Most brands are likely to have a mix of all of these customers, and a good strategy should have tactical approaches that target different levels of commitment.

    He said: “I think a goal like loyalty, whereby people avoid better alternatives out of a sense of obligation or genuine passion, is phenomenally hard to achieve. The danger is that marketers overestimate their chances of achieving that and maybe convert their budget into smaller sales rather than [pursuing] the much, much simpler goal of habit.”

    The 12 Tactics of Loyalty

    The Intuit report outlined 12 Tactics of Loyalty to assist brands and marketers with building meaningful relationships with consumers. 

    1. Smart exposure: Be top-of-mind with strategically placed brand codes and symbols. Almost half (46%) of Australian repeat purchasers said they know a lot about the brands they purchase from. This rises to 60% globally among Fandom purchasers, who feel they know the brand best.”

    2. Familiar foundations: Build familiarity by showing up in trusted spaces. About half (48%) of repeat purchasers in Australia said that recommendations from friends or family help them decide what to buy.

    3. Choice validation: To encourage renewed commitment, help customers feel justified in their choice. Only 52% of inert and 51% of habitual customers globally had a very favourable opinion of their preferred brand, but this rises to 84% among fandom purchasers.

    4. New routines: Build repeat purchases into your customer’s routine. Routines are powerful drivers of loyalty. 25% of Australian consumers will repeatedly purchase from the same brand because it’s part of their routine. Globally, 35% of those who purchase on a daily or weekly basis said their preferred brand was the only one they’d consider (vs 22% among those purchasing monthly or less).

    5. Smooth selling: Remove obstacles that could disrupt customers’ shopping journeys. Ease of purchase was the no.1 brand association for Australians with 97% of repeat purchasers saying their preferred brand makes it quick and easy to purchase; this was the number one brand association for repeat purchase shoppers. 

    6. Easy decisions: Create friction-free experiences that combat choice fatigue. Half (49%) of all email subscribers in Australia explore new product offerings through brand emails and 42% went on to make a purchase after reading the message.

    7. Gift giving: Promote organic peer-to-peer marketing through gift giving. Less than half (36%) of Australian customers have recommended their preferred brand to friends or family, and only 20% have given it as a gift), revealing an untapped opportunity for brands to spread the word. However, globally, this increases among 18-24 year olds, of which 43% have recommended their preferred brand to family and friends and 30% have given it as a gift.

    8. Insider status: Help customers feel heard by asking for, and responding to, feedback. The most popular method of contact is email with over half (55%) of Australian shoppers looking to keep in touch with brands this way and 22% subscribed to an email/mailing list – the highest among surveyed countries. Other popular methods of contact are SMS (20%) and social media (16%). If a brand can’t offer quality customer service across channels, 1 in 4 said they would consider switching brands.

    9. Meaningful rewards: Personalise reward programs with customer lifestyles to boost satisfaction. While 50% of repeat Australian purchasers said they’d like their preferred brand to provide them with deals or discounts, rewards aren’t always about monetary incentives. In fact, 88% said their preferred brand made them feel good, which was the second biggest driver of loyalty, after consistency.

    10. Game on: Gamify your rewards to foster a sense of achievement and fun. 28% of repeat purchasers in Australia said they’d like to receive loyalty reward perks from their preferred brand. However, only 18% have joined a loyalty benefits program, suggesting untapped potential.

    11. Shared interests: Build emotional resonance by aligning with a cultural niche or value. 31% of Australian consumers said they would consider switching brands due to environmental impact (13%) or unethical manufacturing (18%).

    12. Sense of ownership: Actively engage consumers to foster a sense of co-collaboration. Customers are keen to provide their thoughts and experiences to brands, with over 1 in 4 (24%) Australian email subscribers participating in surveys or feedback.

    The post Trust and ‘feel good’ factor rank high in consumer loyalty, Intuit report reveals appeared first on Mediaweek.

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