Monday, May 24, 2010

Animals Can't Drive Utes

I get a lot of interesting things sent to me about Lovemarks, and here is one out of left field. A Masters student in Australia, Bibi Deena Syed sent me over a hardbound thesis ... that’s a psychoanalytic study of Lovemarks. Crazy? Psychoanalyzing love? I’ve traveled the world sharing and discussing Lovemarks with thousands of people, and every time I think there’s no other way of looking at it, someone comes along with a fresh and insightful take.

The researcher breaks down people’s motivations into the “TUM” theory, concluding that we’re all motivated by –

Them Drives: created by the cultural and social things around us (connected with commodities)
Us Drives: based on our desire for belongingness, company and affection (connected with brands)
Me Drives: our desire for self satisfaction and self fulfillment. (connected with Lovemarks)

The study found that the key difference between a commodity, a brand and a Lovemark is that consumers are into the first two mostly because of outside factors, while Lovemarks “make consumers feel good about themselves.”

I really liked the researcher’s focus – the iconic Australian Ute. Much loved down under, the Ute is an interesting Lovemark. The researcher interviewed 12 different Ute drivers about why they liked them so much, then searched the responses for answers pointing to things like sexiness, love, power, body appeal and identification. Here are some juicy highlights from the wild world of Lovemarks:

Q: “My Ute is like a ... (use a metaphor)?”
A: “Cocoon of sense in a sea of useless drivers.”
A: “Secret lover – Powerful.”
A: “Goddess of love with wheels on.”
A: “My right arm and my mate.”

Q: “How did you become passionate about Utes?”
A: “I do not believe I am passionate about Utes, but if somebody bonks into my Ute in the car park, I am prepared to kill.”

Q: “Can you recall your first contact with a Ute or that first moment that you realized that the Ute was your ultimate car?”
A: “Not really. I just always loved them. Always saw myself driving one of them. It fits me.”
Q: “Which of the following animals would you like to be? Dog, Shark, Lion, Snake, Mouse, or Other?”
A: “Me, because animals can’t drive Utes.”


Adam Werbach said...

I love that last comment

Jennifer Pearson said...

Brilliant! I love some of those answers!

Anonymous said...

The thesis sounds very interesting. What is most amazing is that the image you have appears to be a Valiant Ute. What a choice. A lost icon/lovemark. The ute as a lovemark...of course it makes sense. The very things that we constantly observe and take for granted are the true lovemarks.

Deena Syed said...

OMG Kevin I thought you didn't even had a chance to read my thesis, little did I know you blogged about it. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! You cant possibly imagine how much this means to me.

I just found out today from Sarah - editor of lovemarkcampus. I am over the moon - I have been smiling all day, my cheeks are hurting. :)

I have just been offered a Brand Manager position yesterday talk about an awesome week!! Be ready to soon get a new lovemark in the mail from me at Kailis Organic Olive Oil from WA. I am originally from Mauritius. I am also now thinking of going for a PhD on Lovemarks in the next few years.

Love your work :)