Which Came Very first, The Customer or the Brand?

It was David Ogilvy who said, “Consumers do not say what they believe and they really don’t do what they say.” And he was proper about that. At least most of the time. And in a more complex marketplace it’s only gotten tougher to measure what buyers truly consider these days. Not what they say they consider. Measuring that is simple. But measuring what they really consider, and how they are going to behave? That is an entirely various kettle of fish.

We specialize in predictive metrics and in identifying what buyers genuinely expect, and how they are going to engage with brand names, and we’ve identified that occasionally it’s the consumers who get the lead, and often it is the brand names that modify the paradigm, so it is wonderful when consumer values and brand values come together. You can choose any class worth and turn it into a “which came very first, the chicken or the egg” discussion, but you can usually see when a mutual accord of customer and brand values tends to make themselves felt in the true marketplace.


For instance, for many years expectations regarding healthier food were something that type of ambled along on reasonably parallel tracks for shoppers and brand names. Neither buyer nor brand entirely followed by way of for a great deal of motives, but primarily due to the fact buyer expectations – or a lot more exactly, not sufficient true consumer expectations – had been there to make it a worthwhile investment for brands.  But when buyer expectations go unfulfilled for a long ample time, via either scrupulousness or serendipity, some brand finally recognizes the chance and actions in to fill that gap amongst what buyers genuinely expect and what brand names at the moment supply. And when they do, the brand normally does actual well. And when one brand does genuine nicely, other people stick to.

But like we explained, it can be a chicken-and-egg debate, or, following our theme, a lot more exactly a chicken-and-egg whites discussion as to regardless of whether the consumer or the brand drives group alter. As a value, “healthier food” has been all around for years. It last but not least delineated itself, as some thing not quite a “quest for fitness,” but near, and something that sidled really near to “nutrition,” and has now, in the long run, resolved itself as a desire for “free-from” food items. You know, free-from. Totally free-from too significantly salt, or fat, or totally free-from preservatives, or antibiotics. Cost-free-from artificial stuff. Like that. And that value is showing up and making itself felt as regards buyer emotional engagement and brand assortment.

When we appear, for illustration, at a menu of restaurant manufacturers in our January 2014 Buyer Loyalty Engagement Index, we uncover that – just like each other category – shoppers greater engage, i.e., behave much better in direction of brand names they see greater meeting their expectations, and these manufacturers that can do that finish up at the leading of their respective category lists. Currently being No. one is wonderful, but in the situation of engagement getting demonstrates up a lot more tangibly in revenue, industry share, and profitability, anything brand names enjoy serving up to their shareholders. Here’s this year’s best-5 brand names customers see as carrying out the very best job delivering towards their expectations for healthy, cost-free-from foods:

  1. Subway Subway
  2. Chick-fil-A
  3. Panera
  4. Chipolte
  5. Dunkin’

What, in certain, are these manufacturers performing to meet customer expectations? Glad you asked.

Subway announced it was eliminating azodicarbonide, anything business bakers use to enhance softness of dough. BTW, it is also used in manufacturing yoga mats. Chick-fil-A announced it would no longer sell chickens raised on antibiotics. Panera marked a decade of employing meat raised free of charge-from antibiotics. Chipolte has instituted new standards getting to do with nontherapeutic antibiotics and says it will search to supply meats that have never been given antibiotics. And last 12 months Dunkin’ announced they were developing a line of gluten-totally free offerings.

There is a Yiddish saying that goes, “Health is a romantic relationship amongst you and your body.” And these days, customers are extending that connection to restaurant brands that better meet their emotional engagement expectations for, effectively, every little thing that drives loyalty in their respective classes. But as regards, this 1 distinct value, it’s worth noting that while free of charge-from meals is generally more high-priced than food that is typically processed or sourced, it appears that the two clients and brand names are placing their funds where their mouths are.

No matter who came first.

Connect with Robert on LinkedIn.

Uncover out far more about what helps make client loyalty come about and how Brand Keys metrics is capable to predict potential consumer behavior: Go to our YouTube channel to discover a lot more about Brand Keys methodology, applications and situation research.

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