来源Brands That Rock
From Band Loyalty to Brand Loyalty
Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. —JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH
音乐洗涤你的灵魂，洗涤生命中所有的灰尘。 — 约翰·塞巴斯蒂安·巴赫
Your first kiss. Your first car. The day you said “I do.” Chances are the most memorable moments of your life are connected by a soundtrack of music—songs that heighten your senses and evoke emotions that help you experience those memories all over again. Perhaps that soundtrack includes Wagner’s triumphal “Bridal March” from Lohengrin, sparking an overwhelming sense of joy and expectation, or Sarah McLachlan’s “I Will Remember You,” recalling the painful breakup of a love not meant to be. Or perhaps it’s a pulsating refrain from Aerosmith’s classic rock song “Love in an Elevator,” reminding you of well, you get the idea. Regardless of the style of music included in your soundtrack, the magic lies in the ability of music and the bands that create it to connect with people at an emotional level.
Think of what happens when U2, the Rolling Stones, Janet Jackson, or Pink Floyd enters the stage in front of a crowd of 50,000. People scream as a band member walks toward their side of the arena, they cheer at the opening riffs of their favorite tunes, they belt out the words to most of the songs, and they dance, jump, and rock for hours. These are not just “crazy” teenagers; they are people with families, good jobs, college or graduate degrees—in fact, we may even be describing you. And while you probably don’t walk around your office building or community screaming, singing, and dancing, you become swept away by the concert experience—letting yourself behave like every other fan in the house. The power of music is undeniable; the loyalty showered upon those who create it, unmatched; and the lessons for corporate America, boundless.
It is difficult to think of any product or industry that evokes more emotional intensity from its followers than rock and roll. Their attitudes and behavior shatter the traditional measures of customer loyalty in terms of reach, quantity, and degree to define outright fanaticism—the ultimate level of devotion a firm can hope to receive from its customers.
What is it about music and rock stars that transform people’s emotions, behavior, and lives? Enlightened marketers have asked the question, but few have ever bothered to look for the answers. Yet corporate executives sit day after day scratching their heads, looking for insight as to how their brands might inspire even a fraction of such emotional response, loyalty, and commitment. They benchmark the success of others; analyze what promotional and design strategies have worked in the past; and review their advertising and promotional campaigns.
And while marketers have been proficient in analyzing how to create successful brands and satisfy customers, most of their strategies mirror those that other businesses have already implemented.
But what of the companies looking to go one better than what other businesses have been able to accomplish in the battle for customer loyalty? Creating such a breakthrough often requires a bold leap out of one’s comfort zone and into the unknown. Only then can marketers identify the processes and strategies that, when applied to the business world, can provide a leg up on their competitors.
Few look beyond the world of commerce for answers. Why, after performing for over 30 years, do the Rolling Stones continue to sell out venues around the world? How has Elton John been able to have a top-10 hit each year for 30 consecutive years? And how is Neil Diamond able to sell out concerts with minimal PR and advertising expenditures night after night? The answer is band loyalty—the fanatical devotion and propensity to spend that rock-and-roll followers have to a specific performer or band.
How bands create loyalty and devotion in their fans is the focus of this book. The book is designed to help unlock the secrets of how to build emotional connections between your brand or company and your customers similar to those associated with legendary rock-and- roll acts and their fans. It will take you behind the music and reveal branding and marketing lessons that can boost creative thinking, increase market share, enhance the longevity and success of a brand, and create a brand that becomes a cultural icon.
The artists, however, are the first to admit that some of their successes were not necessarily by design. In retrospect, the process of examining why some bands have increased in popularity, remained commercially successful, and increased their fan bases for several decades yields tactics that marketers might use to boost their brand loyalty.
Analyzing the phenomenon of band loyalty is not for the close- minded. It requires marketers and managers to abandon the language and corporate-based thinking they probably engage in day in, day out at work and escape into the wild, fun, larger-than-life world of music and entertainment. Marketers must look beyond the values of bands that they may not personally endorse and open their minds to the ideas and creative processes used in the entertainment arena to cultivate long-term, die-hard fans. Only then can they understand band loyalty and the lessons they can apply to enhance their own brand loyalty.
Beyond Customer Loyalty: Creating Singing, Screaming, Money-Spending Fans
In today’s competitive arena, the battle to attract and retain customers is intense. Firms of all sizes continue revamping their product and service offerings, honing their customer service skills, and revising their loyalty programs. Yet few achieve an emotional con- nection with their customers.
Ask the most successful music acts of the past three decades about customer loyalty, and they’ll tell you it’s all about creating fans— people willing to stand in line for hours to buy the latest albums of their favorite bands or plunk down hundreds of dollars to buy concert tickets. Although this category of customer is not exclusive to the world of rock and roll, fans are far more prevalent and the lessons are more profuse than in the world of commerce.
Why? Because the music world is fan-oriented; in fact the word customer is rarely used. Customer implies that a person walks into a store wanting to buy a CD and decides, after scanning the thousands of albums available, which one to snatch up. A fan walks into the store with the intent of buying the latest Alanis Morissette CD; the person made the decision long before he or she entered the store, because the fan’s desire is not just to buy the latest music but to create a further connection with a particular band or performer. Often the need is even more innate—helping people deal with emotions and express what they are feeling, achieving what Hallmark does in written communication and human emotion.
Although all firms in business today have customers, only the most successful have fans. Why all the interest in creating fans? Because of the effect attitudes and buying behavior have on long-term sales and profit levels. In short, customers buy from a variety of retailers and choose many brands, often influenced by temporary price breaks or other promotions. Firms spend more promotional dollars securing purchases from cherry-pickers (whose tendency to buy a specific brand can be described as sporadic at best) than they do capturing more sales from loyal or frequent customers. Friends (loyal customers) tend to buy certain brands and shop specific stores more often than others—often because of good past experiences. Loyalty programs have helped retailers and consumer product companies foster relationships with consumers and modify their cherry-picking behavior.
Fans, however, take loyalty to the next level, seeking out specific brands, shopping only certain retailers, and closing their minds to other alternatives, as seen in Figure 1.1. Fans invest time, attention, energy, emotion, and money into building and maintaining a rela- tionship to a brand, and these strong emotional attachments between company and customer are difficult, if not impossible, for others to break. And fans are vocal—they not only tell others about their