You. Are. Being. Irrational.
Let me clarify: You. Me. Really any consumer. We’re all irrational when it comes to brands.
A few years ago, the first Krispy Kreme* opened in Colorado. It was right by my office at the time. People are crazy for these donuts, evidently. But, not really being on the KK scene, I had no idea this was happening.
What I did know was that there was a major traffic jam and I was in a position where there was no way out…I had to wait it out. I remember thinking, “There must be an absolutely horrendous crash.” Because it was 30 minutes and I had made no progress. I ended up being an hour late.
Eventually, I understood what was happening.
There was no car crash. This was hundreds of people going to Krispy Kreme waiting - and I kid you not - 14 hours for one of those blessed donuts.
After all, this was Krispy Kreme, a coveted Southern brand! The first location in Colorado! At each store, you can see the donuts being made on this unbelievable contraption and get a donut hot off the line! And when they’re hot…well, heaven!
This wasn’t a first-day phenomenon. This went on for two full weeks - so much so I had to change the way I drove to work.
Waiting 14 hours for a donut is completely irrational…and also an amazing measure of brand loyalty.
Not all brand loyalty examples are this extreme, but we make irrational decisions to buy one thing over another all the time because of how it makes us feel: Heinz vs. Hunts. Coke vs. Pepsi. Jeep vs. Toyota. Kimpton vs. Hyatt. Pearl Jam vs. Nirvana. Ohio State vs. Michigan.
Connecting with your customers on an emotional level - and then delivering a reliably great experience - is what powers loyalty.
When you bring more of that into your business, it figuratively (and literally) pays off: you have a 70% probability of selling again to someone who has bought from you before. What’s more, loyal customers spend 67% more than new ones.
This is why branders love brands so much.
And if you’re thinking, “I’m just a new entrepreneur…I’m not big enough to be a brand.”
I’m here to tell you that’s not true. Your brand is happening with or without you (P.S. it’s so much better if it’s with you!). The best place to start? In the hearts and minds of your customers. When you get that balance right, well, that’s when people get irrational.
Rooting for you!
* If you’re like, “What’s Krispy Kreme and why is it spelled with Ks?” Krispy Kreme is a brand of donuts that have an edible shelf life of 2 minutes, which is about the same amount of time for your sugar to spike and crash. As for your second question, we’ll never know…but stay kurious.