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Over 50% of consumers report that brands rarely live up to their promises. Yet brands are increasingly scrambling for the right to be recommended by consumers.


Why? For years, Nielsen has told us that peer recommendations are the most trusted marketing medium (trusted by 80%). And Bain has reported that companies leading in Net Promoter Score (NPS) grow more than two times faster than their peers.


But the real question we should be asking now is: How? When we investigated, the answer was clear: Invest in brand proof. In fact, brands committed to leading in brand experience enjoy a 200% higher NPS than laggards.


According to our global research on 100 brands and 6,000 consumers, it’s the Brand Experience (actions of and interactions with brands), and not their promises, that are the stronger driver of brand health.


​We found:

  • 75% of consumers globally care about how brands behave towards customers, employees and their communities.

  • Fewer than 1 in 4 brands deliver experiences that are significantly better than their competitors, according to consumers who have done business with them.

  • Brands that lead in delivering proof on their promises achieve 25% higher loyalty than laggards.


By examining over a dozen different dimensions across 10 different industries, we arrived at five lessons for marketers to take away from the new Brand Experience battleground:


  1. Brand proof matters: It’s a stronger indicator of brand health than brand promises

  2. Brand integrity is delicate: Customers will abandon your brand if you don’t live up to your promises.

  3. Brand touchpoints are proofpoints: Every interaction matters, and each one should be a memorable action or interaction to prove your brand promise.

  4. Brand promises fall short on delivery: Consumers see most brands as equally poor when it comes to experience – scoring a “D” in keeping their promises.

  5. Brand proof is only going to get more important: Changing generational tides give new focus for brand owners.


Is your brand an Experience Brand? Is it differentiated from your competitors? Are you thinking about each touch-point as a way to prove your brand promise?


To see the full results our Experience Brand Index, or to use our self-assessment as a point of conversation with colleagues, download the report here.

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