Some believe their brand is different to other brands – people really do love it. Crazier still are those who expect people to fall in love with their brand before they’ve even bought or used their product.
This fashionable idea of ‘brand love’ doesn’t reflect the real relationship that most people have with brands. Selecting most products and services is not a massive deal to most people, and certainly not a life-defining moment as sometimes depicted by deluded advertising agencies and ‘brand gurus’. The idea of ‘emotional relationships’ with brands driving buying behaviour has largely been proved to be a myth.
“Most of a brand’s customers think and care little about the brand, but the brand manager should care about these people because they represent most of the brand’s sales.” Professor Byron Sharp, How Brands Grow (Oxford University Press).Even those customers who repeatedly buy from your brand most likely do so out of simple habit and the product delivering on their needs. Contrary to the moonshine widely peddled by many branding and advertising ‘experts’, it’s not because of some strong emotional bond.
When we exaggerate the role that the brand plays in people’s lives, it leads to self-important and phoney advertising. People are smart enough to realise this and know when they’re being patronised.
This is an excerpt from our new book ‘How To Make Better Advertising and Advertising Better – The Manifesto for a New Creative Revolution’ – available exclusively at the Design Museum.
*With apologies to The Young Ones