Loyalty Comes Second, Study Finds

A study by The Marketing Store shows that the current state of loyalty programs is missing a key ingredient: a good story.

Aug 26, 2014, 06:18 ET from The Marketing Store

CHICAGO, Aug. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- If you're looking to strengthen a customer's loyalty to your brand, don't just give them another card for their wallet. Living Loyal, a study of loyalty across North American brands by customer engagement agency The Marketing Store reveals that customers, on average, have 10 loyalty cards in their wallet, and nearly 2/3 of customers don't think being loyal to a brand is important. However, the key to loyalty may be as simple as the age-old art of storytelling.

"The Living Loyal study uncovered some very interesting data around emotional loyalty and what it means to be loyal to a brand. What surprised us, was there seems to be a dramatic predisposition to brand loyalty - a willingness to engage relationally with a brand - among two (of six) segments of customers over others," said Jeremy Ages, director of strategy and planning, The Marketing Store.

Here are three key findings:

Emotional Brand Loyalty Tied To Storytelling
The Marketing Store's study indicates that story, and the act of storytelling, is key to building lasting brand engagement. Across all categories, the self-reported top-ranked drivers of brand loyalty centered around telling stories.

Six Shopper Loyalty Segments Identified: Two Are Much More Likely To Be Loyal
Living Loyal identified six segments of shoppers and their relative share of the population: Trend Setters (14%), Prestigious Loyalists (25%), Quality Seekers (21%), Non-Shoppers (20%), Deal Hunters (11%) and Dollar Stretchers (9%). Each group is identified by a number of attributes, including purchase drivers and brand affinity. Two had a much higher propensity for brand loyalty.

Men and Women Approach Loyalty Differently
This study helped to peel back the layers as to why, documenting some clear distinctions around the way men and women think about loyalty. And, more importantly, how brands can approach these distinctions. In addition to traditional research methods, Living Loyal also employed the Implicit Network Test (INT) methodology.

The study can be found at: http://livingloyal.themarketingstore.com

The Living Loyal loyalty study researched over 1500 U.S. consumers between the ages of 18 and 65. Conducted by The Marketing Store, in partnership with independent research vendor, IPSOS, the study focuses on consumers' participation in loyalty programs across five travel and retail categories (airlines, hotels, retail--women's apparel, supermarkets, and retail -sporting goods) to help identify the key drivers of emotional brand loyalty, and how loyalty initiatives impact wallet allocation.

About The Marketing Store
One of the largest brand activation agencies in the world, The Marketing Store specializes in Loyalty, CRM, consumer promotions, experiential activations, digital, and shopper marketing for clients including Coca-Cola, Nissan, McDonald's, Discover, and L'Oreal. The Marketing Store is headquartered in downtown Chicago, with offices across the globe in 12 countries and is privately-held as part of The HAVI Group. Follow @marketingstore on Twitter or visit us at http://www.themarketingstore.com.

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SOURCE The Marketing Store