If you read between the lines of Kantar Worldpanel’s most recent Brand Footprint report, which tracks the “150 most chosen consumer brands,” you can connect the dots on some new ways to grow your brand you may not have considered before.

Four (4) seemingly counter-intuitive principles in particular came together for us in the 2016 report, including …

1. TO DRIVE BRAND GROWTH, YOU MUST PENETRATE THE MARKET
Last year, Colgate dominated Kantar’s list (ranking second to Coca-Cola) by reaching a leading 67.7% of the world’s households. While Colgate definitely stands out from the pack, even the biggest brands in the world have plenty of room to grow— Kantar’s top 50 brands commanded an average household penetration of 20.2% worldwide, and one-third of the entire list reached only 5% of a given country’s households. Odds are, there are plenty of households for your brand to grow into.

2. REACHING & ACQUIRING NEW CUSTOMERS IS KEY TO BRAND GROWTH
While traditional customer retention strategies help to stabilize a brand’s number of buyers, it’s new customer acquisition that actually delivers the strongest brand growth. In 2015, 79% of the report’s growing brands expanded market share by adding new customers. Nutella®, for example, one of the fastest-growing brands on the list, added 7.2 million new customers last year, most noticeably in the Middle East, where they grew Customer Reach Points (CRP) by 24.3%.

3. LIGHT BUYERS LIKELY DO THE HEAVIEST BUYING OF YOUR BRAND
While infrequent buyers (and even non-customers) may seem like some of the least appealing targets to go after, data (science!) screams otherwise. In 2015, one to two-time purchasers, “light buyers,” accounted for almost 70% (!) of product category leaders’ customer bases in the U.K., France and Germany— and even bigger chunks of smaller brands’ bases.

4. “LOYALTY” BOOSTING YOUR BRAND’S BOTTOM LINE … IS REALLY JUST A LINE
Contrary to the “80/20 rule” still referenced in college marketing textbooks, the Brand Footprint report shows that “loyal” customers do not provide anywhere near as strong of a sales boost as you’re probably used to thinking. In 2015, the biggest brands in the U.K. only commanded an average loyalty figure of 36% and loyal customers accounted for only 8% of sales dollars. If you’re reading this and you live for CRM, wipe your tears away with a brand of tissues that has a competitor you’ll likely be disloyally buying tissues from next.

Kantar Worldpanel’s Brand Footprint report is always an eye-opener, especially if you know what to look for and how to think outside the typically unchallenged college marketing textbook box.

Source: “Brand Footprint 2016,” Kantar WorldPanel. http://www.brandfootprint-ranking.com/#/download

Grow Your Brand Using "Counter-Intuitive" Science