Brands Need Love Too

We are experiencing a love revolution. Big brands are realizing they want more and are looking for love from their customers.

Love. We all know how important it is to love, and to be loved. Books, movies, poems, paintings, and songs have focused on searching for, finding and losing love since the beginning. It is an experience we spend our entire lives searching for. But love doesn’t just happen between two people. We love pets, sports, plays, and even, brands.

In 2005 Kevin Roberts, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi Worldwide, wrote a book called Lovemarks where he argues that it’s no longer enough for a company to have a strong brand; if they want to succeed, companies have to be truly loved. He goes on to explain the criteria of being a lovemark and what a company has to do in order to achieve that status. To me, one of the biggest pieces Roberts discusses is intimacy. Brands need to focus on the consumer and build intimate two way relationships with them in order to succeed. 

If you look closely you will see that the media is littered with stories about brands wanting to be loved by their consumers. Yesterday Mashable had an article “Did Microsoft just become cool?” quoting the CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella, saying they he wanted “to move from people needing Windows to choosing Windows to loving Windows." 

Roberts’ book was published nearly ten years ago, so why are companies just now realizing this? 

Businessweek yesterday published a piece on the life of Abercrombie & Fitch, “The Aging of Abercrombie & Fitch”, which hints at the fact that A&F has been more focused on the brand than on the consumer. Now, after a few years of decreased sales the company is beginning to listen to their customer and make adjustments to better the relationship.

Some of the biggest brands we know are just now learning something that Kevin Roberts and other brands such as Disney, Nike and Apple have known for a while; to be successful you have to have a relationship with your customers. But is it too late?