Defining brand love and why it should matter to marketers

We have all had those pivotal moments where we are drawn to a particular ad, email, or social media post. Whether it’s the aesthetics, the sound, the overall message, or all of the above, there is something unique about that ad that drew you in. At that moment, you experienced a deeper connection with that brand that felt different than all of the rest. While the concept of brand love is not clearly defined, there are certainly elements of a brand that consumers are more inclined to “love” than others. So why should that matter to marketers? Brand love is aspirational, not a requirement. However, the more you’re able to build a strong emotional connection with your target market the more likely you are to keep them engaged, interested, and potentially loyal to your brand.

While there is no secret recipe to creating a brand people love, there are lessons we can learn from them. Netflix consistently appears on various lists of brands consumers love. That makes you wonder what they are doing differently than other brands. According to Accenture’s 2016 Love Index, Netflix was rated as the most loved brands in the world. To arrive at this conclusion, they based their metrics on what they define as the five FRESH dimensions – fun, relevant, engaging, social, and helpful. Each of those dimensions is rated and weighted to determine their Love Index Score by which they can compare rankings with other brands.

Netflix was highlighted as a game-changing brand that has completely “disrupted TV viewing, storytelling and pop culture in general”. They came into the industry bringing something new to the table, giving consumers something they didn’t even realize they wanted.

They have also managed to stay highly relevant in terms of the content they curate and deliver along with staying engaging, fun, and helpful. Their level of personalization has also surpassed expectations, which has set them miles apart from their competition. Brands that can disrupt a culture, continue to provide value, and do it in a way that makes consumers perceive them to be indispensable is a clear indicator of impact. This is the type of sentiment that would drive brand love. Furthermore, global brands that people love are now increasing customer expectations, not just for their company but across industries. They set the standard by which their competitors are now forced to match (at minimum) or risk not being sustainable long-term. 

As marketers, we all strive to create brands that people love but to do so we need to be intentional, strategic, and most importantly empathetic. Producing a quality product that consumers feel they can’t live without takes immense insight, social listening, and constant adaptation and innovation. For a brand to inspire the feeling of “love” from their consumers, they need to get emotional, personal, and most of all human.