The marketplace is constantly evolving, and as new technologies and a dynamic consumer base continue to change how brands are designed and perceived, we knew that a revision of marketing’s fundamental principles was long overdue. Rational-based strategies; artificial testing approaches based on behavioral hierarchies that don’t reflect the real buying process; the assumption that awareness and consideration lead to purchases—these concepts, while not necessarily obsolete, are almost certainly outdated with how consumers interact, buy and use brands.
We now understand that the biggest indicator of purchase is how we feel about a brand. Feelings in general are a tremendous area of opportunity, and by creating brands that people connect and relate to—brands that tell a compelling story in a simple straightforward way—marketers can both take advantage of and create new opportunities. Decision-making is instinctive and emotional. The question is, how can marketers leverage these new insights to their advantage? It will clearly require keeping things short, sweet, and impactful.
Is brand intimacy easy? No. Does it necessitate changing a lot of conventional approaches? Probably. Does it make sense? Clearly. Does it make business sense? Definitely.
It is our hope that our book on brand intimacy gets people thinking about the actual relationships people have with brands . . . and, in being a relationship, how it can be reciprocal and engaging. What must brands do to deepen bonds with consumers? How can they invite dialogue and engagement? Most people think only of how brands can attract and sell, not how they can participate in a relationship and deepen bonds with people.
B2C and B2B brands seeking an advantage today must strive to better understand and realize their intimate brand potential. From assessing opportunities and developing corresponding marketing strategies through to design and execution, there are literally hundreds of ways, both big and small, that companies can improve their effectiveness in creating brand intimacy.
Ultimately, companies need their brands to drive tangible results. Therefore, it makes the best sense to concentrate efforts on those areas that have proven to show results. When you see new partners and customers being drawn to a brand as it lays claim to new emotional territory, you know that what you’re doing works.
Whether a company is a small start-up or a massive multi-billion-dollar, global conglomerate, brand intimacy can create incremental or transformational improvements in your marketing efforts. We encourage all brands to build bonds, link to emotions, and amplify their relevance through increased intimacy.
Just as with any relationship, the more you put in, the more you get out.
Contributed to Branding Strategy Insider by: Mario Natarelli and Rina Plapler. Excerpted from their new book Brand Intimacy – A New Paradigm in Marketing.
The Blake Project Can Help: Accelerate Brand Growth Through Powerful Emotional Connections
Build A Human Centric Brand At Marketing’s Most Powerful Event: The Un-Conference: 360 Degrees of Brand Strategy for a Changing World, May 14-16, 2018 in San Diego, California. A fun, competitive-learning experience reserved for 50 marketing oriented leaders and professionals.
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