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Marketing Strategy: Are You A Purchase Brand or Usage Brand?

Posted by Ann D'Adamo on Mar 12, 2018 7:08:00 AM

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As long as consumers have problems, brands will develop solutions to solve them. How marketers position products in the minds of consumers often determines their success. A new study looked at the marketing strategies of traditional, or legacy, brands and compared them to the strategies of emerging digital-first brands and then surveyed consumers to gain insight into brand perception, usage, and advocacy. In doing so, they identified startling differences in how marketing strategies impacted the way consumers viewed the brands. 

Marketing Strategy

legacy brands                                                  

traditional advertising                                   

digital-first brands 

social media and word-of-mouth

Messaging

The study found that brands fell into two distinct clusters, purchase brands and usage brands. Purchase brands focus on creating demand to buy a product, while usage brands create demand for the use of the product

 Add a little bit purchase brands usage brands example_ Hilton Hotels, Coca-Cola, BMW Airbnb, Red Bull, Teslaemphasize promotion emphasize advocacyworry about what they say to consumers worry about what consumers say .jpg

The Consumer: Experience is more important than perception

Consumers exhibited more loyalty to brands that centered their marketing and messaging around a usage mindset. They had stronger advocacy in the form of spontaneous recommendation to others and indicated a higher preference for usage brands over competitors – not just in purchase, but in price as well. Consumers were willing to pay a 7% premium, were 8% less likely to switch brands, and more than twice as likely to make a spontaneous recommendation of the brand.

Usage brands demonstrate their relevancy even before purchase and recognize that some of the most meaningful engagement with a brand happens outside the traditional sales funnel. With a focus on how consumers experience the brand, rather than how they perceive the brand, usage brand lead with strategies that put the consumer at the centered with strategies that include creating relevant content that demonstrates how their product makes life easier or more enjoyable, user-generated content, and user-generated reviews and ratings.

Leading with the consumer is how digital-first brands are winning. Women’s Marketing offers a suite of digital marketing strategies and solutions that help consumers find the brands that will become vital to their lives. Contact us today to learn more.

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Source: Harvard Business Review, The Most Successful Brands Focus on Users – Not Buyers February 2018 

Filed Under: Digital