We encounter brands in more ways than ever. The difference is that our interactions with brands are made easier, and much faster.
Branding is no longer a one-way street, where consumers remain silent, at the receiving-end of a line of products.
Through community branding; we as the consumers have evolved into ‘actors’. That’s because we’re actively helping to shape the things we use. Our comments, likes, and subscriptions provide real-time feedback to influencers.
This makes for ultra-fast, and constant improvements on products. Unlike traditional brands, which also embrace the power of social media; community brands make for positive and negative feedback. Therefore, with a more well-rounded range of information from followers, Influencers update the brand to meet the exact needs and desires of their users.
Traditional brands, on the other hand, maintain social media pages for reactive purposes, a sort of ‘damage control’. On many occasions, pages are in danger of becoming poster boards for users to vent frustrations about a product, essentially rendering this a customer service center.
In the age of social media - Community Branding is at a big advantage.
Followers help generate content directly, by explicitly suggesting “add more XYZ” and “keep posting about ABC”. They also shape content by generating a certain amount of views for particular photos and videos, determining subjects’ popularity and relevance in our ever-changing world.
In all, it’s a very dynamic process of inclusivity.
As followers of an influencer become more involved in the shaping of the brand, they retain an emotional attachment to the brand, thereby creating brand loyalty. And it is through the improvements that they make to the clothing, that they strengthen their loyalty.
Branding is at a turning point. Those who interact, are winning in numbers, but most of all – they’re winning the hearts of their followers.
Older brands no-longer have that power.