Can people fall in love with brands? People like some brands and dislike others, that’s for sure. But have you ever really loved a brand? Do you love the apple on your phone or the blue wrapping paper on your chocolate bar? Are you willing to pay more or travel some distance to get the right product?
The loved brand can be something you buy, like a soft drink or a phone, but it can also be something else. It might be a sports team: in Helsinki region we are traditionally divided in two groups, the HIFK fans and the Jokeri lovers. It might also be a band ar an artist. These gather huge crowds and people don’t even realize: they are in love with a brand invented by marketing specialists!
How to make your brand lovable then? Rajeev Batra, Aaron Ahuvia, & Richard P. Bagozzi tell in their article “Brand love” (2012) about their reseach on the issue. They say that the key components of a loved brand are:
1. Linkages to strongly held values
2. Possibility to use the brand to express both current and desired self-identity
3. Positive affect
4. A sense of rightness and a feeling of passion, an emotional bond
5. Investments of time and money
6. Frequent thought and use and length of use.
Do you recognise yourself and your relationship to some particular brand? I know I do: I love Coca Cola, always have and always will. I actually think many of us do love the Coca Cola brand. I think it tastes better than Pepsi but I’m not sure if it’s really the taste or just effective branding. I really feel that the Coke bottle in my hand sends a certain kind of message about who I am and what are my values.
What do you think? Do you love a brand? Is brand love a remarkable aspect of the future marketing and branding strategies? Or is it just overrated and stupid?