I, personally, love brands. I can feel them the way I can feel a person and they mark my life and memories.
We feel a brand when we encounter a "thing" - an organization or grouping of people. We have opinion and emotion that we attach to every brand we encounter, the same way we do with every person we encounter, like it or not.
Try this: imagine your most significant other. What is your opinion of them, in your own private words? How do you feel when you think of them?
Now think of the company that built your car or the church you went to when you were 12 years old or the french class you took at the community college 7 years ago. You have an opinion of each of those and you feel a unique way about each one. Right?
They are brands. They are how you mark and label your life's memories both in your head and in your heart. They are not cold, faceless corporations.
They are collections of people that do things just like individual people do.
Why You Should Love Brands Too
That's how I see brands and I love them because they are important. The Catholic Church was an ever present brand in the early part of my life. I definitely have unique thoughts and feelings about the church that are mine but are influenced by my experiences with the church. The same is true for my high school, each of my employers and projects I've been part of.
You already love brands - and you probably hate some of them too. But without them you have no labels to apply to yourself.
So here's what I think this means for your business:
How people think and feel about your brand belongs to them. The only thing you can do is make sure every experience they have with your brand is the best you can give.
How do you think most people experience your brand?