Volume 23 No. 3: The Great Brand Loyalty Debate

We're diving into a topic that keeps many marketers up at night: the brand loyalty debate. Is it more strategic to focus on retaining loyal customers, or should brands prioritize acquiring new ones? 



The top 20% of buyers account for only 50% of sales.                    

That’s in direct opposition to the old 80/20 rule. It shows ignoring the bottom 80% of buyers leaves a lot of sales on the table.   


Why choose only acquisition or loyalty? Do both.             

Marketers walk a tightrope between keeping customers happy and attracting new ones. It’s a difficult balancing act, sure. But it is possible. 

According to a study by Kantar, brand loyalty is built by emotional connections. Brands that go the extra mile to understand their audience's preferences and expectations—typically by using customer data to deliver tailored experiences—show customers they’re valued. So they stick around.  

Of course, capturing new customers' attention is also crucial. It’s how brands grow. This requires research into understanding your audience and crafting compelling messaging based on what you’ve learned. 

Those two types of efforts don’t sound too different, do they? Contrary to popular belief, loyalty and acquisition don’t have to compete. In fact, they work best together. 

The key is a customer-centric strategy. By gaining insights into your audience, you can craft targeted outreach that resonates at an individual level. This humanizes the brand experience and builds meaningful relationships, be it with a new prospect or long-time loyalist.  

Listen in on our discussion.

"Is it still ok to talk about brand loyalty?”             

This article by Mary Kyriakidi recaps a top theme from Kantar’s 2023 report on the biggest debates in marketing: whether brand loyalty or new customer acquisition is more important. All according to research. Read the article.


High quality = high value. Loyal customers can actually drive new ones.  

“Users who continually find value in a product are more likely to tell their friends about it.” 

—Nir Eyal, best-selling author of Hooked