Building strong, long-lasting, loyal customer relationships is critical to a business’ success in a competitive market. Marketers aid businesses in fostering these customer relationships through brands.
Brands represent the business to customers about its values, goals, and how its products are an optimal choice in satisfying the customer’s wants and needs. A brand helps a business distinguish and differentiate their goods and services from their competitors through brand positioning.
Brand positioning sets businesses apart from their competition by influencing a customer’s actions, feelings, mindsets, and thoughts. Brand positioning also affects the extent to which customers connect with a brand.
Brand resonance is the connection, degree of the bond, and relationship that customers have with a brand, which is critical to a business’ success – in the words of Tom Cates, “Strong customer relationships drive sales, sustainability, and growth.” Brand resonance begins with building a brand. It consists of applying marketing metrics that entails essential building steps and building blocks necessary to cultivate a successful brand.
Brand Building Steps:
Brand Identity (Who Are You?):
Marketers must ensure customers recognize and are aware of the brand by creating awareness or salience. They also must ensure that the customer’s perceptions of the brand are correct.
Marketers can conduct market research to determine how customers decide about the brand compared to its competition and explore various market segments to understand how customers view the brand.
Brand Meaning (What Are You?):
Marketers must pinpoint and communicate the brand’s implications or meaning to customers.
Marketers can convey the brand or product’s ability to meet the customer’s needs functionally by describing its performance, including its attributes, features, and characteristics in their communication efforts. Additionally, marketers can utilize imagery to show how well the brand meets the needs of customers psychologically.
Brand Response (What Do I Think, or Feel, About You?):
Customers respond to brands based on how the brand makes them feel or think about the brand. Customers make judgments and express feelings about brands. They make judgments about the brand based on credibility, quality, consideration, and superiority. Furthermore, the brand can directly evoke emotional reactions or responses to the brand.
Brand Relationship (How Much of a Connection and What Kind of Association Would I Like To Have With You?):
Brand resonance occurs when customers feel and experience a robust and deep connection with the brand. Marketers can achieve brand resonance by rewarding their customers through customer loyalty programs or gifting customers for their purchases.
As mentioned previously, brand positioning enables businesses to distinguish and differentiate their goods and services from their competitors. Point-of-difference (POD) is the benefits or attributes that customers believe are unique, distinctive, and could not be found to the same degree with a brand, whereas point-of-parity (POP) are benefits or characteristics that are not exclusive to the brand. Brand positioning requires both point-of-difference and point-of-parity in determining the brand or product’s best position in the market to achieve success.
Snickers, an American brand chocolate bar introduced in 1930, grasped this concept to recover from a period of declining market share and sales in 2009. Snickers suffered from unsuccessful marketing campaigns that fell short in delivering clear messaging to their audience to differentiate the brand from its competition even though they used their distinctive and iconic attributes. Many customers were having difficulty understanding how the Snickers brand differed from other chocolate bars in the market and recognizing the Snickers brand through their campaigns. Snickers brand implemented a new marketing strategy that included a new brand positioning by communicating their point-of-difference and using POP and POD to better position the brand among its competitors. For instance, the Snickers brand used creative, distinctive brand elements or assets and clear differentiation to position their brand, which resulted in a 15% increase in sales globally.
Brand resonance is critical to a business’s success because it is a customer’s relationship and connection with a brand. Brand building and brand positioning create the foundation in which businesses accomplish brand resonance and its success.