Tuesday, July 29, 2008

'Things', not brands

Ana recommended that I check out Lovemarks.com, a site all about peoples’ relationships with brands. But Lovemarks isn’t about brands you like and brands you dislike, it’s about sharing stories of your experience with things, brands included.

Things is a very important word here. It underscores that you can have a deep affinity for not just a consumer brand, but also for people, places, concepts, even foods.

The central premise of Lovemarks I think is to allow people a forum to share their intimate interactions with a
thing and learn about others’ shared experience with that same thing. This is a mark of something you love…a lovemark.

Strange, I know. Frankly, I cannot distinguish between a lovemark and a really great brand which develops positive meaningful relationships with its customers. For example, is Apple a brand or a lovemark? Is Obama a brand or a lovemark?

I can only speculate as to the strategic purpose of Lovemarks.com, owned and operated by Saatchi & Saatchi. Does this prove the global agency’s global orientation to global brands serving global consumers? Does it establish a massive forum for them to real, in very rich detail, the psychographic reasons behind brand affinity by consumers? Yes to both, because broadly, Lovemarks.com allows S&S to distinguish itself from other agencies which say that they can do trend evaluation, but unlike Saatchi, have not internalized this as a significant part of their organizational DNA.

Here are a few lovemarks on the site which made me laugh:


“On a cold day, when snow is approaching, Starbucks is the place. It’s right next to my highschool so it’s easy to get to at any time of day. For me, Starbucks is that warm beacon on the horizon when you’re suffering through a hard day.”

“The first sip of a Starbucks Italian french press sends a chill up my spine. It's like being kissed on the back of my neck!”

“They line up like zombies for less than average coffee served and made by those young enough to work for minimum wage. What awful coffee, what an awful concept. Head for a real cafe where coffee is an art not a cost centre. Support your local barista not a college kid under the Seattle thumb.”

Brunello di Montalcino

“It's one of the most famous wines in Italy. It's a symbol...with his great color red as passion and with an inimitable taste. It's grown in a place that looks like paradise...and it's also the most sexy thing I ever meet!”

Vin Diesel

“I love Vin. I think he's a great actor, and I'm sick of people saying he's gay, I heard that he as a girlfriend who's a model and has a baby with.”

“I admire a self-made man who can make it using his creative ingenuity, intelligence, and charming persona. Have fun with your developing video games. Can’t wait for the next Riddick installment.”

HAHAHA – what?? Creative ingenuity?

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