Can the experiences you build for your audience inspire brand love? For many businesses, increasing brand love is a highly strategic move that (done right) can turn their customers into fans, expand reach, and boost profits.
Why care about brand love?
Brand love is all about building a relationship with your audience – going deeper and creating something more meaningful and long-lasting. And as a result, you’re more easily identified, more trusted, more likely to inspire commitment, and likely to pay more, too.
When people love you, you get more referrals. According to Nielsen, 83% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and loved ones – a percentage that’s trending upwards and well above any other form of advertising. And then from those referrals, you also get more loyalty. A customer you get from word of mouth brings a 16-25% higher customer lifetime value than if they’d come via a marketing channel.
“The most desired gift of love is not diamonds or roses or chocolate.
It is focused attention.”
– Richard Warren
Why are some brands more loved than others?
A survey of over 250,000 adults in the USA uncovered 25 of the most loved brands. Some of the top names include Google, Hershey’s, Amazon, UPS, Kellogg’s, Sony, Betty Crocker, YouTube, Campbell Soup, Colgate, Dove, Netflix, and Home Depot.
It’s an interesting mix, although you could say there’s a bit of tech, a bit of comfort and nostalgia, and the affordability factor. In general, these brands give their audience the experience they want, while operating with the values that matter to them. And in return, their customers reward them with love, loyalty, and dollars.
Love is all you need
One reason we’re seeing more of a trend towards brand love is that brands are moving away from traditionally masculine traits towards more traditionally feminine traits.
|Traditionally masculine traits
|Traditionally feminine traits
Adopting these traits and values can actually pay off – big time. Especially if you want to appeal more to women, a market with increasing earnings and buying power. Developing traditionally feminine traits has been shown to have 4-10% higher revenue. Even more telling – over the last decade, meaningful brands have outperformed the stock market by 206%.
Create warm and fuzzy experiences
When you create amazing experiences for your customers, it helps them associate those warm and fuzzy feelings with your brand. Brand love can even rub off on other brands, like when more than 15 brands created their own warm and fuzzy moments on the ground as part of the Australian Open (a much-loved sporting event). Experiences included limited edition products, themed merchandise, freebies, play zones, virtual reality, and more.
When it comes to choosing your experience, think outside the box about how you might associate “love” with your brand. The brands at the Australian Open had some wonderfully creative activations that will make a lasting impact on their audience. And if you take a look at Volkswagen’s installation of a piano staircase from 10 years ago, you’ll see that their brand experience is still inspiring fun today – clocking over 1,220,000 views on YouTube. Which goes to show that meaningful brand experiences can reach a much larger audience than those who were there in-person.
“Love is a verb.”
– Stephen R. Covey
Get up close and personal
If you love someone, you want to be with them as much as possible. The same thing applies when it comes to brands – you want to make yourself accessible, go where your customers are, and increase your brand touch points. Stay in touch with your audience and give them opportunities to stay in touch with you. Brand love isn’t just some airy-fairy abstract concept. It’s real. It leads to results, like greater customer loyalty, more referrals, and increased profits. And it’s something every business needs to factor into their brand experiences and customer interactions.
Whether you want to create love at first sight or rekindle the flame, we can help you design better brand experiences for your audience. Part art, part science and all heart – our unique approach can help you become a much-loved brand and turn your customers into dedicated fans.