By Richard Green, Vice President Brand and Content at Miele.
In recent years, brands have faced an increasingly challenging competitor landscape, massive shifts across the retail sector and fundamental differences in the ways consumers make purchase decisions. The brands that come out on top share have one thing in common – the ability to deeply resonate with their customers’ personal values.
After a year of mass uncertainty, political turmoil, and a surge of misinformation, the world has turned to brands to take a stand and lead the way.
A strong brand can become a beacon of trust and familiarity for consumers during volatile times.
Today, 72% of consumers make purchase decisions based on a brand’s values and principles1, considering everything from a brand’s action on climate change and inequality to its cultural relevance and use of humour.
Recognising this shift in consumer behaviour, Miele recently launched a new brand campaign focusing on how its core values of performance, craftsmanship and sustainability meet the needs of customers today by driving ‘Quality Ahead of its Time’.
Authenticity and consistency are also crucial keys to success, with consumers becoming increasingly savvy to empty words and promises. Brands need to be prepared to put their words into action and stay true to what they believe in, each and every day. This also means ensuring a consistently great customer experience in every interaction, keeping customers at the centre of everything we do. For us at Miele, this means transforming touchpoints to ‘trustpoints’ by looking to meet and exceed our customers’ expectations at every stage of their relationship with us.
This ethos of building trust and reliability is also good for the bottom line as well, as its often repaid with advocacy and long term customer relationships. According to the Edelman Trust Barometer 2021, 61% of people will advocate for a brand they trust, recommending it to others or mentioning it on social media, while 57% said they would buy new products from the brand, pay more, or do both.
It has never been more important for brands to show people who they are and what they stand for. The need to understand your audience has probably never been so essential, how they live their lives and how culture evolves their perceptions and that of the brands that they choose to invest in. In a world of increasing accelerations, those that fail to keep step with society and culture will simply get left behind. Trust and loyalty are valuable commodities, but brands have to work harder than ever to earn and maintain them.
1The State of Consumer Spending: Gen Z Shoppers Demand Sustainable Retail – First Insight January 2020