A consumer’s good experience with one product can cast a positive imageacross your entire brand. Known as the halo effect, it is important to leverage these positive associations with a specific product to build brand loyalty. A great example of the halo effect is Apple in connection with the iPod. As Al Ries notes in his article in AdAge, in 2005 the iPod accounted for only 39 percent of Apple’s revenue, with computers, software, and services making up the bulk of the rest. However, in that year, nearly all of the marketing budget and ads that Apple produced were for the iPod, and not their other products. Still, even with limited visibility in ads, Apple computer sales jumped 68 percent from 2004. This was because of the halo effect. People’s positive experience with the iPod translated into an overall positive perception of the Apple brand, putting them at the top of the consumer’s mind when it was time to buy a new computer. The glimmer of Apple’s halo has shone on nearly all of their products and campaigns, making them a strong competitor in the tech world.

So, how does your brand acquire its halo? Here are a few tips to assist your product on it’s quest for a glowing reputation.

1.  Be Available

Consumers will never become attached to a product or brand that is hard for them to find. Make sure your sales reps keep retailers stocked with your products. Unavailability is a huge issue for revenue and brand awareness. Consider leveraging Field Activity Management software, which allows your reps to know how often a location needs to be restocked, the retailer’s ordering habits, as well as assist in organizing regularly scheduled visits. This will ensure your product never encounters the perils of being out-of-stock (OOS).

2. Be Knowledgeable

Know the history of individual products and their success rates in different locations and seasonality. Your brand may benefit from a software solution, assisting in keeping your products in stock and allowing you and your field reps to have access to a full product history at each location. Digital forms and audits that are completed on a mobile device and stored in the cloud allow for instant recall and organization. This acts as a helpful log for determining what promotions have been hits, or if there is a product that a certain market purchases more or less often. By having strong knowledge of retailer and consumer habits, you can ensure your customers stay happy with a product, and by association stay happy with your entire brand.

3. Be Noticeable

Take advantage of merchandising and promotions like discounts, tastings, samples, and sponsored contests. Make sure your sales reps are keeping displays full and neat to help catch your customers’ attention. Similarly, promotions are a great way to develop brand loyalty. Getting a good deal or a sample of a product gets your foot in the door to become a customer’s “go to” brand. Utilizing real time updates is a field activity management best practice must.  Reviewing real time photos of displays and product placement through Field Activity Management software allows you to see displays and promotions on location, and reminds field reps  what consumers responded well to.

The halo effect is a tried and true marketing strategy. For new products and brands emerging onto the market, connecting to past successes can be especially effective in drawing a steady following. But a lack of streamlined organization and knowledge can cause problems for brand loyalty ranging from wasted time and money to serious blunders. We hope these tips will help you and your reps ensure you cultivate your halo.