You are viewing Aaker on Brands blog posts from September, 2011 (4 total). You can also view all blog posts.

Secrets of Social Media Revealed 50 years ago

Almost 50 years ago Ernest Dichter, the father of motivation research, did a large study of word of mouth persuasion that revealed secrets about how to use social media to build brands and businesses. The study was reported in a 1966 article in HBR.

A major Dichter finding that is still very relevant today was the identification of four motivations for a person to communicate about brands. The first (about 33% of the cases) motivation is product-involvement. The experience is so novel and pleasurable that it must be shared. The second (about 24%) is self-involvement. Sharing knowledge or opinions is a way to gain attention, show connoisseurship, feel like a pioneer, have inside information, seek confirmation of a person’s own judgment or assert superiority. The third (around 20%) is other-involvement.…

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September 29, 2011  •  Permalink

Amazing Brand Loyalty Data

Brand Keys’ 2011 Customer Loyalty Leaders Index is based on over 500 brands from 79 categories.

Four findings caught my eye.

The strength of the online brands with real differentiation was surprising. Amazon is number one (up from seven last year) and Zappos is number six (unrated last year). Except for J. Crew at 21, the only other retailers to make it into the top 50 were discount chains, starting with Walmart at 13. It looks like the future is now for online retailing. I wrote in a recent HBR blog posting “Will Retailing Ever Be The Same?” that smart phones that allow someone to order online while they are in a store have tipped the retail balance. That observation coupled with the strong execution and points of differentiation in the very best online…

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September 20, 2011  •  Permalink

Does Brand Love Really Exist?

One way to conceptualize intense loyalty is to use love construct. Kevin Roberts, the CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi, was an early advocate and elaborated the concept in his 2004 book Lovemarks.

Three Michigan researchers, Rajeev Batra, Aaron Ahuvia and Richard P. Bagozzi, have provided more depth to “brand love.” They conducted two qualitative studies exploring what a person means by loving a brand or other object and a quantitative study to identity its underlying dimensions and the output or value.

The findings are fascinating.

The qualitative studies found characteristics that subjects reported when discussing brands they loved. They included feelings that the loved brand:

  1. is the best in every way from value, to key attributes, to experience.
  1. connects to something deeper. Apple (the most mentioned loved brand was the iPod) represents

creativity and self-actualization.

  1. creates

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September 13, 2011  •  Permalink

The Influence of Brands Differs by Category and Country

A study of the overall importance of brands with a category (BRiC) was conducted by German professors Marc Fischer, Franziska Volckner and Henrik Sattler and was published in the Journal of Marketing Research (October, 2010).

The study involved 20 categories and five countries: U.S., UK, France, Spain and Japan. It used a 12 item scale measuring brand relevance in a category (e.g. When buying, I focus mainly on the brand), risk reduction (e.g. I choose a brand name to avoid disappointments), and social demonstration (e.g. I purchase brands because I know others notice them).

The results are fascinating and have both tactical and strategic implications.

The U.S. has the highest level of brand influence. Spain and France are closely behind with respect to risk reduction, but not social demonstration, while Japan and the UK have the reverse pattern. Such a finding suggests that the same positioning and communication strategy may not span these four countries.


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September 8, 2011  •  Permalink