Rakuten Marketing Insights Announces Brand Affinity Report; Marketing Study Reveals 'What Makes People Love the Brands They Love'

SAN MATEO, Calif., June 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/— Rakuten Marketing, a leading technology company that enables brands to increase sales through data-driven marketing, released today its latest Rakuten Marketing Insights report, ‘What Makes People Love the Brands They Love.’ The report provides an in-depth look at the current state of marketing, consumer loyalty behavior trends, brand applicability and guidance to drive greater customer brand obsession, and key data and insights.

In this Rakuten Marketing Insights study, more than 1,500 consumers were polled on the reasons they do or do not engage with brands. The company analyzed and combined these responses with advertising performance data collected from approximately one million consumers who made over 1.2 million purchase transactions.  The study showed that brands who successfully connect with a consumer’s core values are significantly more likely to set a foundation for brand fidelity, advocacy, evangelism and, ultimately, obsession. The report also showed U.S. brands are missing a tremendous customer opportunity. A staggering 68% of study respondents stated no loyalty to any one brand and for the 32% who were brand loyal, lifetime engagement was a primary driver. The study also introduced the concept of a ‘brand affinity hierarchy’ which outlines six stages of consumer engagement that enable marketers to better understand what degree brands are achieving human-centric brand relationship-building with their consumers.

According to Bridget Fletcher, Marketing VP, Rakuten Marketing, “The customer-to-brand relationship is invaluable to the success of every brand, and in today’s marketing arena, where technology and data takes precedence, marketers can lose sight of this. This study shows the critical importance for brands to establish meaningful consumer connections….ones that are authentic, emotionally-driven and fueled or facilitated with technology and data. Consumers look for connections, not just transactions.”

The study also analyzed the value of repeat customers by analyzing purchase behaviors and found a steady performance improvement as consumer purchases increased.  Not surprising, when consumers make more purchases and purchase more frequently, brand value increases. The study showed that, as consumers transition from being acquainted with a brand (2-3 purchases) to trusting a brand (4-5 purchases), they develop a relationship where they are more likely to purchase again. This was demonstrated by a 1.9x increase in customer value between second (brand acquaintance) and fourth (brand trust) purchases. The value of the brand increased as purchases increased, demonstrated by a 7.2x increase in customer value between the ninth (brand fidelity) and first purchases (brand awareness) and an 9.7x increase in customer value between the twelfth (brand evangelism) and the first purchases (brand awareness).

“Attracting and keeping loyal customers is a bigger challenge than ever in our current retail environment. The opportunity to build loyalty has shifted online, as consumers become increasingly less engaged with brick-and-mortar experiences, putting advertisers in competition with Amazon and Google to sell their own products,” said Rakuten Marketing CEO, Tony Zito. “It’s critical that brands leverage advertising strategies that bring new consumers to their own online storefronts, and keep existing customers coming back, so they don’t lose their loyal customers to another platform. We’re dedicated to helping brands strategically leverage our Integrated Marketing Solutions to achieve this, so they can build the affinity and trust required to grow their audience of loyal customers, repeat purchasers and brand evangelists.”

The full Rakuten Marketing Insights report, including additional data and insights, is available here: https://go.rakutenadvertising.com/brand-affinity-report-2017.  More information about Rakuten Marketing and the company’s digital advertising solutions is available by visiting https://rakutenadvertising.com.

About Rakuten Marketing
Rakuten Marketing’s industry leading solutions empower marketers to thrive in their evolved role and achieve the full potential of digital marketing, efficiently and effectively, with data-informed insights that create consistent, engaging and influential experiences across screens. Offering an integrated marketing solution, along with unique insights and consultative partnerships, Rakuten Marketing delivers the tools that marketers need to increase efficiency, productivity and performance.

Rakuten Marketing is a division of Rakuten Inc. (4755: TOKYO), one of the world’s leading Internet service companies. The company is headquartered in San Mateo, California, with offices in Australia, Brazil, Japan, the United Kingdom, and throughout the United States. Follow us on Twitter or learn more at https://rakutenadvertising.com.