Consumerism is all around us. It is just a part of our culture. As an American, I am constantly pressured by many forms of media that wants to dictate what I buy and for what reasons why.
This regiment of advertising and creative marketing has been around for countless years. When the radio first came around it was costly. The production costs in regard to generating revenue was astronomical. For the radio companies to offset some cost, they started to pay advertisers money in order to pitch there product. By doing so, it was less costly to them. After getting multiple advertisers to help with funding, the radio stations could then count on making a profit.
Such early advertisements in print, tv, and radio were mostly used for the home and useful for working mothers. The advertisements then began a slight change when tv’s become more popular. Now they still advertised useful household items but also things for recreation. It was now not uncommon to have a household cleaner and a baseball glove advertisement in the same sitting.
During the current age, advertisements have sky rocketed. Retailers utilize them like no other. When watching tv, using the internet, or reading the newspaper, these are everywhere. As soon as you then walk into the physical store, your mind explodes with thoughts on what to buy.
All of this, one would think, cannot be good for us all the time. There must for one be a line drawn in which it just becomes too much. I can only imagine in ten years how overtaken our lives will be while consumerism continues to take over.
In coexistence with the tiresome amount of consumerism in our society is the idea of brand loyalty.
Brand loyalty is when a person has a good experience with a brand and therefore continue to purchase products from that brand. An easier way to describe it is by a real life example.
Almost twenty years ago, my dad needed a cell phone. He needed to keep up with the markets (he’s a commodities trader) while on vacation or away from the office. The phone that he purchased at the time was a great big clunker. Such a mammoth beast of a phone by todays standards.
The cell phone was from the provider Sprint. Wined back to the present and our family has still used Sprint. Throughout our time as Sprint users, we have certain unsaid perks if you will. Whenever one calls in for servace and we need a repair or something, the help person looks at our records and often times goes leaps and bounds to assist us. This is when staying loyal to a brand pays off.
By being brand loyal, we in fact save ourselves lots of money.
The question that then comes is two parts. First is how does one pick brands to be loyal to? The second question is when a brands product or overall quality goes down, should one keep being brand loyal?
I think that the first question is quite easy to answer. Choosing brands is a matter of personal preference. Often we base this on recommendations from friends or other relatives.
The second question provides much dilemma. When one has been loyal to a brand for so long, people can understandably be very hesitant to change. A great example would be in regards to a computer company such as Apple. If Apple tomorrow decided to release a new computer, people would buy it. So in this scenario, you bought the latest and greatest laptop. You take it home and play around with it for a while. After a short period of time you realize that you don’t like the laptop. Based on the previous idea, you would then abandon Apple products for future purchase.
Could it be that the Apple designers just had a flub up? They are human right? If it were me, it would not be worth the effort to change brands. I am the type of person who likes consistency. Changing brands would cause stress in my life.
As a parting thought, I would like to ask you whether you would change brands after spending so much time with one. If yes, what are those reasons?
By examining such questions, we can hope to gain a better understanding of brand loyalty.