| December 18, 2013

Happy Birthday! Now Buy Our Stuff!

Businesses want us to be loyal to their brands. But what do we demand for that loyalty? The answer: A live person when we call for help, and an annual Happy Birthday wish.

Sound weird? Two new studies shed some insight into where we decide to spend our hard-earned cash…

76 seconds

When it comes to calling customer service, “the window to win or lose brand loyalty is a mere 76 seconds,” claims a new study called Connecting with Customers. “Consumers expect access to real-time help within 76 seconds.”

The survey revealed that 69 percent of consumers are more likely to be loyal to a brand that provides live, human assistance at critical moments, while 82 percent say their perception of a brand improves when live chat is available.

Good wishes

Another study, this one by a tech marketing firm called Fulcrum, says, “Companies seeking to get closer to their customers simply need to remember and acknowledge their birthdays.”

It seems 74 percent of consumers who received birthday messages from a company they do business with thought more positively of the company afterwards – and 88 percent of those positive reactions translated to increased brand loyalty.

That doesn’t include birthday discounts, only birthday greetings.

It’s most notable when it comes to food…

“Consumers responded most positively to birthday greetings from the food and beverage industry, such as Baskin Robbins, Ruby Tuesdays or Starbucks. Ninety-two percent of consumers receiving greetings from such food and beverage establishments thought more positively about the sending company, and 96 percent reported an increase in loyalty.”

So what’s wrong with this? Nothing, as long as it doesn’t cloud your spending decisions. But if buying your favorite brand is affecting your bottom line, then it’s time to step back and re-evaluate your spending.

Buying a product because it’s a name you recognize is called brand recognition, and advertisers want you to be loyal to their brands. But you don’t owe any brand your absolutely loyalty if you can get the same quality at a lowest price.

Instead, each financial decision should be based independently on quality and price. If you’ve fallen victim to advertising and branding, and you’ve racked up more debt than you can handle, Consolidated Credit can help. Call us to speak with a certified credit counselor or take the first step by requesting a Free Debt Analysis.

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