Back You are reading: What is brand loyalty in a digital-first world?

What is brand loyalty in a digital-first world?

Key Insights
  • Technology has changed the game in terms of the relationship we have with a brand.
  • It's now paramount for a brand to strive to be less transactional in their digital ecosystem.
  • Digital experience can evoke emotion, engagement and influence.

Firstly, it’s important to clarify that the notion of ‘brand’ has expanded from being simple corporate artefacts to a complex set of characteristics and associations that add up to the unique “meaning” a brand has in people’s minds.

Brand has become pervasive in our day-to-day experiences as consumers, not only while we are purchasing, but also as we interact with popular and corporate culture. Furthermore, brands have been on an evolutionary journey to better relate with consumers in an attempt to become increasingly more “human” – by acting and feeling less like a faceless company, and more like a relatable person that manifests in visual, verbal and visceral ways.

So if modern brands are really about creating ‘meaning’, while also being more human and relatable, then how should they show-up and behave in various digital environments; across the internet, particularly on websites, social media platforms and in messaging apps, where customers and communities now primarily organise and exist?

The promise of digital marketing has always hinged on the ability for greater personalisation—that the excesses of data available to marketers would enable them to pinpoint consumers and create ultra-resonant content and experiences. However, as technology infiltrated daily life people became disillusioned with how much data they were giving over to various platforms and how it was being gathered and utilised to influence and control many aspects of their lives.

Pushback from consumers and the regulation that followed demanded improved data practices and policies, and what was once hidden in the fine print became a top-line brand consideration. World-leading companies like Apple now position on data privacy and security as a core tenet of their brand promise. It’s become critical for brands to be completely transparent and take a more human and caring approach to digital relationships with their customers – and those that are talking with their customers, rather than monitoring them, are already finding themselves in stronger positions to deepen connection and influence.

Today’s leading brands understand the need to focus on creating digital experiences that deeply resonate and create value for their intended audience. Data measurement is absolutely critical and will always be a fundamental consideration with respect to driving greater effectiveness, but data should never become the primary objective itself and should always serve a greater purpose – one that unlocks greater value for the customer.

Great digital experience is about capturing imagination, demanding attention and inspiring action – whether that be participating, transacting or motivating people to share the experience with their followers and communities to harness the immense power of word-of-mouth in the hyper-connected digital age.

Furthermore, as we dive head-first into an AI-driven reality, automated conversational interfaces and commerce will become increasingly prevalent, collecting vast amounts of data about customers’ interests, activities, and preferences as customers begin to speak more than click. Brands utilising these nascent technologies must also meet customers on transparent and mutually agreed terms when it comes to data, while also ensuring that they deliver meaningful experiences that positively impact customer beliefs and behaviours.

The digital landscape is evolving rapidly and the atmosphere of change underscores the strategic importance for authentic brands to invest in establishing genuine digital relationships with their customers. One could argue that customer loyalty has flipped to become about brands being loyal to customers, by supporting and enabling them to effectively unlock the benefits of new technologies like web3 infrastructure, mixed reality and of course artificial intelligence. 

It’s our belief that digital-first brands that show-up in relevant and ethical ways to help their customers safely navigate these uncertain times will lead the future.

Juicebox is the ideal partner in navigating the dynamic landscape of the digital-first world. Uncover more insights on how to cultivate brand loyalty and forge lasting connections. Our expert perspectives in digital marketing and brand strategy equip you with the tools to stand out in the digital realm. Strengthen your brand’s online presence today with Juicebox. Let’s shape a powerful digital future together.