UK consumers are consistently setting high standards for brands to live up to, increasing their expectations and demanding a higher quality of engagement. It is now easier than ever, what with the large number of communication channels available, for customers to claim brand loyalty – but it is also easier to abandon a brand due to poor customer experience, new research reveals.
For nearly a quarter of consumers, it would take more than a year to restore their trust in a company that has failed to meet their expectations, while a similar percentage (23%) admit they could never trust a business again. These findings are from a survey of more than 2,000 consumers carried out by customer experience management firm Thunderhead. The findings also showed that despite brands’ increasing efforts to build customer loyalty, 52% of respondents have seen no improvements in their relationships with brands over the past three years, with almost a quarter saying that their relationship with companies had worsened.
Consumers share bad brand experiences with an average of 18 people, according to Thunderhead. This is most likely to happen online, on the phone or in person, The Drum reported.
Marketing is no longer a business function dealing simply with customer acquisition, as it now has a more strategic role within organisations, the authors of the report commented. Its greater scope also means greater scrutiny, but the findings from the study suggest that customer relationship strategies are often hindered by a lack of focus on customer engagement. This causes frustration and impairs consumer satisfaction, leading in turn to a decrease in brand loyalty that could prove costly to organisations, The Drum reported.