Making Sense & Marketing Sense of Doggy, Human, and Brand Love.
Considering I've been there myself, I get the doggy-love thing. Sure its Oxytocin flooding the brain that gets the love going, but there's more to the love humans share with dogs. Doggy love is 'easy' you see. The creature in question is wired to give you what you need and ask for less in return. Doggy love is probably as unconditional as love can get. For humans there's so much to get from doggy love, and there's no compulsion to give. There's no playing games, there's no having to worry about heartaches. Dogs love despite what humans are! It also helps that dogs don't do the jealousy thing as badly as humans do, and will have their masters' back anytime, every time! In fact, dogs may even love people more than their canine brethren.
Step into human love territory and the scene changes dramatically. When it comes to loving people, there's quite some 'labor' to be put in. Reciprocity to such loving effort can't be guaranteed. Between humans, the back and forth of love is almost never even-keeled. Its no wonder then love between humans is such a messy affair.
In the world of business and marketing, there's such a thing as brand love. There's enough research out there that proves consumers 'get into' relationships with brands. Here are the different phases of brand love according to Tim Halloran, and here's how you can measure it. Tell you what, brand love works just like doggy love. The brand 'gives unconditionally' like doggies do. It enables its buyers to fulfil needs that operate in social and psychological territories. So for example, the torn jeans brand allows the young man to live out his fantasy of rebellion, which is why he reciprocates with love. Note, without the ripped denim the young man would have no means to tell the world his contrived story. The tattoo, bandana, and the bad-ass bike are all love objects for a demographic that uses brands to satiate psychogenic needs.
The deep bonds dogs and humans have should fill us with wonder. I see it as a miracle of nature. As to the love between consumers and brands, now that's territory of marketing magic. One that should fill us with awe!