Consumers Are Loyal to Only Five Brands According to New Study by Silverpop


Coke or Pepsi? Levis or 7s? Tide or OxyClean? Take quick a look at the items around your house. Do you prefer to only purchase a particular brand of detergent, soda or jeans?

If you do, you’re not alone – new research by behavioral marketing company Silverpop (an IBM company) reveals that people are extremely loyal to the brands they love most and will seek out products made from their favorite manufacturers over competing options.

While this may seem fairly obvious to some, the study’s findings reveal that consumers only have 5 ‘Best Friend Brand’ companies from which they will repeatedly open emails and buy products. Basically, brand loyalty boils down to perceived relevancy and trust between companies and their customers.

Silverpop’s research examined online shopping habits and communications preferences for nearly 4,000 consumers across the US, UK and Germany. What they found was that nearly three-quarters (70 percent) of people surveyed said they were more likely to make a purchase if a brand’s initial email correspondence was tailored to their specific likes and preferences. Additionally, 64 percent of these same consumers said they are more likely to open emails from brands they already trust.

Americans are more brand loyal than people in the UK and Germany by 10 and 5 percentage points, respectively.

“Consumers prioritize brand relationships much like they do personal relationships, with some being closer and more important than others,” said Dave Walters, product strategist at Silverpop, an IBM company. “While brands are competing for attention, it’s critical for them to get their correspondence with consumers just right in order to be considered a Best Friend Brand. Brands can no longer simply take the same-for-all approach. Outreach must be tailored to each individual’s needs and email offers a fantastic opportunity for this type of relationship building.”

While the report goes on to highlight the importance of tailored email communications, I believe there is a need for simplicity in marketing. Today the average person receives upwards of 15 emails from brands on a monthly basis. If consumers really care about receiving messages from their favorite 5 “best friend” companies, it might be time to employ a mass unsubscribe service like

If everyone did this, while it might severely dwindle marketing lists down by 30 percent, conversion rates would certainly improve since people would only be receiving emails they cared about, and wouldn’t be trained to ignore the rest. In fact, the study reveals people only open about half of brand emails they receive (55 percent) and only tend to purchase from three brands online every three months.


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