Brand Affinity and its effect on your business
Affinity is defined as an “inherent likeness or agreement; close resemblance or connection”. In our day to day lives, this affinity drives the relationships we have and the decisions we make. Common ground, shared values or beliefs and a mutual understanding of something often shape friendships, business relationships and most importantly for the purpose of this article - buying decisions.
There are some companies that seem to have been around forever, that have had an indelible mark on our society. In many cases, they have been around longer than most of us reading this article. The reason, in many cases, is simple - those who purchase their product and service identify with the brand.
Let’s look at Nike for example, they are masters at understanding their brand, their audience and positively associating the matters of the day (not always associated with the trainers that they are ultimately trying to sell). Nike set themselves apart from the other sportswear companies by positioning themselves in line with the beliefs of their target market and looking to affect change through the power of their long-established brand.
Colin Kaepernick and Raheem Sterling are two recent and very relevant examples of this point. Both men have bravely stood in opposition of what they rightly perceive to be injustices on either side of the Atlantic.
Nike’s Kaepernick campaign has already paid massive dividends, their fiscal second-quarter net income rose 10 percent to $847 million or jumped to 52 cents per share from 46 cents per share last year. In addition, sales increased by 10 percent to $9.37 billion, topping expectations of $9.18 billion with the revenue increasing by 14 percent to $8.9 billion. They are now in the process of repeating this feat with Sterling.
The driver in these successes is that Nike has placed on record their support and ultimately assisted with publicising this exceptionally powerful message. Nike’s intricate understanding of their audience has allowed them not only to empower positive social change but to build affinity with their customer through shared values.
The principles of this strategy are transferable. Not every business has the voice to effect social change the way that the Nike’s of this world do, but that’s not to say that the power of association and brand affinity are unattainable.
If we understand our audience properly and utilise the tools at our disposal then it is possible to curate the desired affinity between your brand and the sources of information that your target audience actively seek out through technology.
The power of brand affinity, in our opinion, cannot be understated. It’s the image that your company conjures up in the mind of your potential customer when they think of you. That perception is the difference in whether they spend with you or your competition.
Digitonic has been successfully delivering this affinity for brands in some of the most competitive arenas in the world. It does not happen by accident, a process of understanding our clients' customer - and the news and content sources that they know and trust allows to carefully place the brand in question at the front and centre of the pieces that their customer is reading.
Our AdNews product has allowed us to nurture that relationship between content source and brand in a range of verticals through social media communities. The value and reach of this approach is huge, and the power of positive brand affinity and the message that it conveys lasts much longer than the Ad itself.