Why Consumers Join Brand Communities Online

The degree of connectedness between a consumer and a brand may be determined by how well consumers are integrated into brand communities.

brand communities

In addition to peer recommendations, brands are playing an increasing role in consumers’ purchasing decisions. The degree of connectedness between a consumer and a brand may be determined by how well consumers are integrated into brand communities.

The Journal of Brand Management published a study conducted by the University of Castilla-La Mancha that investigated the influence of community integration on brand identification.

The study shows how brand identification influences satisfaction, loyalty and word-of-mouth communications. It also confirmed the influence of brand community integration on consumer satisfaction and brand identification.

The investigation measured the following variables in the analysis:

  • Brand community integration
  • Brand identification
  • Satisfaction
  • Loyalty
  • Word-of-mouth

Nearly 33 percent of consumers join a brand community online to receive a coupon, discount or product trial, and almost as many join to learn more about a brand. About 30 percent join to get advanced news about products or to receive free content and support a cause. About 26 percent join to share appreciation with others or to associate with something they think is “cool.” A little over 25 percent join to have fun or enter a competition.

Additional findings include the effect of brand identification on consumer loyalty and word-of-mouth recommendations.