Brand Allegiance in the Era of Aware Consumers: A Demise

Brand Allegiance is Dead in this Era of the Aware Consumers

Sunil Param : Head of Content and Communications at Pine Labs

By Sunil Param | October 22, 2021

Sunil Param is the Head of Content and Communications at Pine Labs.

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Brand Allegiance is Dead in this Era of the Aware Consumers

If you have built a fantastic brand over the years, kudos to that. Will that be enough to woo today's tech-savvy and aware consumers? Think again!

Consumers today are spoilt for choices when it comes to any product category. There is stiff competition and consumers have no dearth of choices when it comes to selecting a brand that meets all their requirements, be it pricing, quality, or speed of delivery. Your customers will engage with you as long as you're relevant for them. If it means defecting to a rival brand, well at the drop of the hat, they will.

Adding credence to this point is the 2021 survey finding by YouGov (commissioned by The Trade Desk) that reveals most consumers are brand switchers. In fact, as many as 53% survey respondents in this survey were found to be neutral or indifferent to the brands they purchase. The exploratory nature of modern consumers is also well established by the survey results that further add that 6 in 10 consumers are interested in learning about new brands during the festive season.

So, what can you do in this era of heightened consumer awareness when it is not just the brand equity that matters but also the value for money and experience that a consumer gets from your brand? Well, there is no surefire answer to it. There are however a set of must-focus things to elevate the in-store consumer experience and here they are:

A long checkout queue is a no-no

In-store serpentine queues might augur well for optics, perhaps creating the perception of business going well, but delayed checkouts for sure have a negative impact on the customer experience as it makes them rethink about their next visit. You need point of sale solutions that work like a breeze and lets you clear customer orders faster. The first thing to do is to upgrade your PoS terminal if you haven't already. New-age Android PoS terminals are a "one-interface do all" must-have investment, faster and with multiple integration with different banks all on one terminal. Add to that, the fact that using these means no more handing over printed forms to get customer data and thereby quicker clearance.

Shoppers want affordability options

Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) is here to stay. We know, you know that there's lot happening all over the globe around this win-win proposition for both merchants and consumers, be it the Australian fintech giant AfterPay's announced acquisition by US-based fintech behemoth Square or payment giant Mastercard's intent to launch Mastercard Installments, a BNPL program for U.S., UK, and the Australian markets.

It pays to integrate BNPL option with your PoS terminal as customers have taken a liking to the idea of paperless and instant EMI conversion option against their planned purchase.

Young consumers want to be in control

Instead of saying, you have payment mode A but not B, and C but not D, offer more ways to your customers for them to pay at checkout. That does not mean clutter the point of sale with 10 different machines. Our Android PoS terminal for instance is equipped to handle multiple payment modes, be it traditional ones like debit and credit cards or new-age contactless payment modes like 'tap and pay' or QR code payment at PoS.

Building a fantastic brand is half-the battle won. The other important half is being relevant to the changing needs and buying behavior of consumers. The leaders and laggards of the future will be decided on how well and how quickly they are adapting to changing consumer needs and coming good on their expectations across all touchpoints.