New research reveals 58% of brand lovers admit to hoarding their all-time favorite food product on hand. The study, conducted by Foodmix Marketing Communications, Elmhurst, Ill., sought to uncover the new and enlarged role of brand love in the food world.
The research highlights the new strategies needed to create powerful brand stories and turn customers into advocates. Findings prove that three-fourths of brand lovers would go out of their way to get a loved product, as well as pay more money for a loved brand. Brand lovers are also more willing to try brand extensions, and less likely to switch to competitive brands.
In regards to negative news about a brand, brand lovers are more likely to be skeptical about what they hear vs brand likers who are more likely to take the news at face value.
Consumers who love a food brand are far more likely to tell others vs those who enjoy the brand’s qualities but lack a strong emotional bond to it. Eighty-six percent will recommend a loved branded food product to family and friends whenever they can, and one in four food brand lovers want to share photos of the brand’s products on social media.
Brand lovers extend across channels as well. The emotional equity of a loved food brand in retail can lead consumers to seek it out in foodservice outlets. For instance, 61% say they would try a new restaurant if it served a loved food brand.
The takeaway for food companies showed that quantitative research demonstrated the significant impact of brand love on critical consumer KPIs—getting customers to make repeat purchases, resist competitive offers, be receptive to cross-selling and recommend to others. The research shows why food companies in today’s hyper-competitive market, competing for highly-informed, overwhelmed consumers, need clear strategies for creating brands that are truly loved.
“Brand love creates big-time brand advocates—being a favorite brand just isn’t enough anymore,” says Dan O’Connell, chief executive officer. “Today’s winning brands need to have strong, enduring relationships with consumers built on emotional attachment, and their products need to offer deep emotional benefits.”
Foodmix surveyed 1,000 U.S. consumers about their favorite food brands, the extent to which they loved their favorites and explored how brands become loved, the emotional bonds that define that love and how consumers behave toward loved brands. The findings unveiled the power of love to dramatically boost what consumers will do for their favorite food brands.
“Consumers used to be blasé about brand histories,” says O’Connell. “Today’s consumers want to connect to brands with unique stories that feel authentic. Today’s winning brands need to be loved brands.”