Brands That You Love

HeartAre you in a long-term relationship?

I love everything Apple – my iphone, my MacBook Pro, my ipad! I love my Mazda … Zoom Zoom. I love Air Canada and their Aeroplan loyalty program. I’m a loyal fan of my local nail place, even though there are dozens of others to choose from. I love Downton Abbey, though I wouldn’t wear a t-shirt with the logo. But I buy my toothpaste by price not brand.

What is it about brands that make you love them? They simply make you feel great! It’s that powerful emotional connection. It not what they do, but how they make you feel during those intimate moments of the brand experience. Those moments build trust and affection. Each experience builds on the next to create loyal followers. The global advertising agency, Saatchi and Saatchi, coined the term Lovemarks to describe the ongoing love stories with brands that create and keep those emotional connections.

Just a one-night stand brandLasVegas1

During my recent trip to Las Vegas, I was exposed to a massive number of brands. You couldn’t blink an eye without seeing dozens vying for attention in this cluttered cacophony of chaos. From luxury brands on luminescent screens to the street hustlers looking for new patients at the Orgasim Clinic. (Yes, that typo was on their t-shirts.)

It was a fascinating display of  “Love me. Love me.” – literally and figuratively. Some brands lure you in over time with repetitive and seductive advertising. Others are more aggressive and in-your-face, appealing to that I-need-it-now impulse purchase. Regardless of how you ‘fall’ for a brand, it’s what happens next that is the true test of your brand love. How do you feel the morning after?

You’ve heard the term ‘buyer’s remorse’. When that purchase seemed like such a good idea at the time but later you regret it. Well, I’m sure there are many people that regret some of those Vegas ‘purchases’. But a truly loveable brand experience makes you feel really good the next day … and the day after … even for years to come.

A great example of this is the M&M’s brand. It’s nostalgic and emotionally engaging, 4-story monolithic store in Las Vegas has every imaginable item proudly displaying the M&M brand. You can get golf balls, dinner plates, underwear and more. You can even print personalize M&Ms to truly own the brand experience. Now that’s commitment!

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DSCN3597Monogamy vs. Brand Loyalty

Yes, we ‘brand loyals’ become emotionally involved with the products and service that we use on a regular basis. But just because you’re loyal, it doesn’t mean you can’t try other brands. “What happens in Vegas… stays in Vegas.”

Sure, sleep around and try other brands. It might actually make you realize how satisfied you really are with your current brand. Or it may open up the possibility that you could be even more in love with another. That is why all brands need to keep trying and never take their customers for granted. Even when they think they have customers for life.

VegasWeddingSignBrand loyalty deserves constant emotional reinforcement. Growing the psychological and emotional bond over time is the key, as research suggests in this Fast Company article. In order to create and maintain brand loyalty, they must create experiences that stimulate our senses, enable us to do things that we couldn’t do without them and enrich our lives in some way. Does your brand to that?

I would love to hear what brands you truly love. Post your comments here and let me know what makes you fall in love with a brand.

Happy Valentines Day!