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Foster Loyalty through Community

12 September 23

In the ever-changing world of marketing and branding, a remarkable concept has taken center stage: the brand community. Imagine a group of devoted individuals who go beyond "just" being customers - they become interconnected networks, thriving on a sense of belonging, engagement, and loyalty. In today's diverse business landscape, brand communities are practical tools to develop your brand.

Establishing a brand is a lengthy process that involves overcoming challenges caused by larger competitors. Recognition often hinges on customer support. In community branding, the focus shifts from typical customers to those who provide valuable, honest feedback on brand quality. Organic growth within a brand community occurs as the brand's reputation spreads through word of mouth, increasing awareness. From the perspective of community members, honest product reviews among friends and colleagues can also foster strong connections, solidifying them as a supportive brand community.

To learn more about brand communities, we have four examples of brands that utilize their communities to maximize their presence in their respective industries; LEGO, Nike, Sejauh Mata Memandang, and Teh Botol Sosro.

LEGO Ideas is a platform launched by LEGO in 2008, where customers are allowed to freely design and submit their product ideas, as well as participate in contests. The voting process is conducted to select concepts with the highest number of votes, which are then reviewed by LEGO staff. The chosen idea will be developed into a product for sale, and the fan designer will receive a 1% royalty from the sales. This unique approach has become an effective way for LEGO to involve customers in the creative process and build trust with them, and also as a way to help them recognize that LEGO is not solely focused on sales, but also creatively appreciates their customers.

In the context of sports and community, Nike's commitment to athletes goes beyond sponsorship, extending to providing them with efficient footwear and clothing based on continuously collected data. This exchange of trust strengthens shared values and enables athletes to offer professional representation, which is especially beneficial for newcomers to the sports arena. This branding approach not only inspires the community to look up to Nike and its athletes but also empowers community members with products that carry these high values, adding to their lives through participation in sports.

In Indonesia, we have a local fashion brand called Sejauh Mata Memandang that merges Indonesian culture with sustainability through upcycled creations. While it collaborates with local artisans and farmers, Sejauh also offers and invites its customers to be involved in their sustainable journey. The brand has various programs and campaigns, highlighting Indonesian cultures with each pattern and name of their products. It also partnered with an Indonesian waste-management company to provide their upcycling campaign contributed by their fellow customers.

As the pioneer of bottled tea brands, Teh Botol Sosro, with its catchy slogan, has established itself in the local community by collaborating with food vendors in Indonesia. Recently, they have made efforts to connect with the younger generation through a packaging design competition and sponsorship of music festivals. By actively engaging its community, Teh Botol Sosro maintains its relevance and memorability, ensuring its continued success within the industry.

Before launching your brand, it's crucial to define it: your product or service, its purpose, target audience, and desired brand identity. This clarity helps align your values with your customers, strengthening your brand community. Next, choose the right community platform; consider your audience's preferred social media channels for discussions to ensure effective engagement. Lastly, show appreciation to your customers through rewards like coupons, discounts, or free services. Though it incurs costs, these rewards express gratitude for loyalty, fostering brand growth and recognition.

Despite its traditional nature, community branding remains a practical approach that cultivates trust and loyalty among consumers. At Milestone, we're here to guide you in taking the proper steps to expand your community outreach. Let's connect!