Impact of Negative Quality Inconsistency on Brand Loyalty – Case of Croatian Food Market
Attracting and keeping consumers’ loyalty in Fast Moving Consumer Goods segment became the main concern for all producing companies and retailers, too. Many marketing researchers argue that product or service quality perception is one of the key elements in brand loyalty building process. When talking about food market, one has to be aware that food consumption has direct impact on human health and, in that context, process of building brand loyalty for food brands is not possible, or it can be hard, if the product quality of food brands is not on the expected level and according to defined food quality standards. The goal of this paper was to understand aspects of connection between food product quality and brand loyalty process better and to explore how problems with negative quality inconsistency in different food categories can influence brand loyalty.
An empirical research (on-line survey) was conducted to prove and explain the connection between food product quality and food brand loyalty. The research results shows that the main reasons for being loyal to a certain food brand or product are related mostly to positive brand experience, high and stabile product quality, and recognizable taste. In the context of these research results, it can be concluded that long term consumer satisfaction as a factor in food brand loyalty process depends on stabile product quality, so food manufacturers or food brand owners should be focused on preventing or minimizing the aspect of negative quality issues. Regarding research limitations, the study was conducted only on users from Croatian market; so broadening the survey to other markets should give a clearer view on the connection between food product quality and brand loyalty process.
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