Relevancy and Trust Key to Becoming a Best Friend Brand

by Jessica Ramesh IBM Marketing Cloud

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Research from Silverpop reveals that consumers only have five ‘best friend brand’ companies from which they will repeatedly open emails and buy products

The research, which examined the online shopping habits and communications preferences of nearly 4,000 consumers across the UK, the US and Germany, found relevance and trust to be at the heart of building these relationships.

More than 70 per cent of surveyed consumers indicated they would be more likely to make a purchase if a brand’s initial email outreach was tailored to their likes and preferences, while 64 per cent of consumers polled said they would be more inclined to open an email because they already trusted the brand sending the email. The importance of trust was even higher in the US – with 70 percent of respondents influenced by it, nearly 10 percentage points higher than the UK and five percentage points more than Germany.

“Consumers prioritise brand relationships much like they do personal relationships, with some being closer and more important than others,” said Dave Walters, Product Strategist at Silverpop, an IBM company. “While brands are competing for attention, it’s critical for them to get their correspondence with consumers just right in order to be considered a best friend brand. Brands can no longer simply take the same-for-all approach. Outreach must be tailored to each individual’s needs and email offers a fantastic opportunity for this type of relationship building.”

In addition to underscoring a strong consumer desire for relevancy the report also highlighted the important role email in particular plays in helping brands build relationships with customers. Only 14 per cent of respondents worldwide said that email wasn’t important in the communications they received from their favorite brands. This was even lower in the US and Germany, where 8 per cent said receiving communications with their favorite brands in this way wasn’t important to them. But, individualised email is what matters most, with more than half (58 per cent) of consumers across the globe saying they wouldn’t open an email if they thought it was irrelevant to them or their needs.

And becoming a best friend brand should be a priority – especially as the research showed people only open half of the emails they get from brands (55 per cent) and will only tend to purchase from three brands online within the space of three months.

The research also found that, when it comes to brand communications, more than two thirds (67 per cent) of consumers want to receive information such as new products, special offers, transactional information and newsletters via email. And yet, over a quarter (26 per cent) said that a brand’s email approach would stop them from buying from them in the future.

View the complete best friend brands research report here.