By Reez Ndukwe
The concept of branding now became a rampart in business and commerce. Before humans had always based their decisions on three most powerful emotions. They are instincts to alleviate pain, fear, and greed. After far back as the 1st century, people’s daily decisions and long-term decisions were affected by those, although in addition to logical reasoning and strategic thinking that is sometimes put forth before making some hefty decisions. Those emotions and intuitions always affected decisions including purchase decision.
These purchase decisions include what to buy, where to buy, and who to purchase from.
The narrative is also similar today. In fact, many young and middle-aged consumers complain of what is called “impulse buying”. That is the excess purchase of products or services that are counted as unnecessary wants. Some blame it on external factors around them.
This is a baseline fact in consumer psychology and branding. Consumers buy the brands they like due to the brand’s sense of character and vibe. When a brand creates a moderate connection with the target customers’ personalities, it can result in customers’ loyalty. It furthers the promotion of that brand product. A good example is how the fashion industry makes a ‘must own’ element in a particular fashionable piece. This would initiate a fear of missing out (also known as FOMO). It a strong urge to buy would grow in the hearts of customers and even potentially new ones.
This is just one major way in which brands ingeniously frame a uniqueness for their offerings. They correlate the company’s brand with that product or service offering. Brands have numerous ways in which they affect the purchase decisions of their ideal customer or consumer demographic group. In this article of Hobo.Video, we will consider ways in which we can quantify the effect that brands have on purchase decisions.
Persuasive response to ads- a key to influence purchase decision
When big upcoming and big brands post online ads or banners, they do so in a very captivating way. They use high-resolution visuals of the product to influence the purchase decision of buyers in their favor. They try so hard to ensure that the potential buyers visualize themselves to be using the brand. For example, they imagine being more fashionable when wearing a Belstaff leather jacket. But before defining a brand, it is important that we isolate the product from the brand company doing the advertising.
Why is that so? Marketing experts realize that a product is anything that is sold to satisfy customers’ needs and wants. Whereas, a brand is a type of product made by a particular company with desirable attributes. The attributes are known only to that company or manufacturer. These attributes may be tangible or intangible. The tangible properties may include the differential shape, taste, texture, color, and so on. The intangible properties may include iconic design, socioeconomic or cultural symbol, affiliated celebrity or personality, and logo image.
In line with this, the branding message invites more curious minds than the products in some instances.
David Ogilvy a world-renowned advertiser and copywriter said: “products, like people, have personalities, and they can make them or break them in the marketplace”.
Similar to the way people carry unique personalities, brands are assumed to have personalities. They include a sense of character that is not solely determined by the actual physical (tangible) features of the product. But by a group of other factors such as online advertising. For instance, a potential customer comes across such an advert that follows the above philosophy. Then they are most likely to be in concordance with the brand’s personality. Further, they might make up their mind to purchase it. Hence, persuasion on the guarantee of quality is often instantaneous, providing a spike response to ads by the measure of high traffic and conversion rates.
Engagements on social media promotions pushes purchase decision in your favor
Research shows that generally, the consumer’s purchase decision is to buy the most preferred brand especially that which is pushed upfront by social media influencers. It’s no secret that social media influencers and celebrities promote products or services in a broader, efficient way than ordinary TV or Google ads. Two ways brands can qualify a “lead” or brighten the purchase intention of customers in advertising are as follows;
First, give a customer a promotion such as a price discount and second is to use an irresistible offer, such as ‘2 For 1’ campaign or a gift with purchase.
Companies spend resources in understanding their audience and try to bring in a face or icon personality (maybe small to medium scale social media influencers) that is associated with what the majority of the customers are in tune with. However, engagements on a given social media platform regarding a specific product promotion will ascertain if an individual has a good or bad feeling associated with a brand.
Immense customers’ reviews and testimonials
As stated above, social media comments and participation can create a hate or love perception for that company. This results in brand loyalty or the opposite. Thereby it affects purchase decisions, so brands need to be original and meaningful. The same is true with online customer review sites and forums. Remember that a famous product line within a small geographical area can exponentially grow. It can even grow into an international brand product if there are immense customer reviews and testimonials. This could maximize profitability with increasing ad costs. It’s like the saying that “the best form of influencer marketing is “word of mouth”. In today’s age, the word of mouth can also include positive real testimonials online about a given product or service.
Therefore, consumers who read and hear the opinions and recommendations of others using the brand are more likely to be influenced to buy it.
Impulse buying, a last minute purchase decision
In the introductory part of this article, the term “impulse buying” was highlighted as one way in which marketer’s influence on customers’ buying choices has taken its adverse effect. Brand experts and influencers have shoved down their ‘buy this, buy that’ motto unto target consumers that they act on the impulse to purchase something simply because it is on sale and it caught their eyes. In developed countries especially, these few seconds’ decisions to buy unnecessary wants have led to over-consumerism and wastage.
The shoppers at the supermarket, or at an eCommerce store will be pleased or unpleased after buying a product or service of the demand. They will be engaged in post-purchase customer behavior and manufacturers and marketers know how to increase their marginal utility of that product or service to ensure a reorder. The post-purchase behavior will affect whether the consumer will maintain loyalty to the brand or buy from another brand on sale.