If You Could Give One Brand a Hug, Which Would It Be?

Once again, another study finds that people, especially millennials, absolutely love Apple.

Calling itself the “Brand Intimacy Agency,” MBLM published its annual study analyzing over 54,000 brand evaluations from 6,000 consumers in the US, Mexico, and the United Arab Emirates.  The study, spanning 15 different industries, studies which brands have the strongest emotional bonds with the customers.

MBLM found that millennials and young people aged 18-24 felt most attached to Apple products.  Among millennials, Disney ranked as the second most intimate brand.  YouTube took third.  Among younger people, Amazon took second, followed immediately by YouTube.

Spotify, currently reigning supreme in music, was not among the top brands.  That’s a bad sign, given that Apple Music making rapid strides in paying subscribers.  Similarly, Amazon’s multiple streaming music services are also surging from behind.

Last year, the brand intimacy agency posted similar findings.  Apple beat out Amazon and Disney as the most intimate brand around the world.  YouTube hadn’t previously ranked on the list before.

Speaking on the findings last year, Mario Natarelli, MBLM’s managing partner, said,

“Brand growth starts and ends with emotion and the quantity, quality, and character of the bonds formed with customers.”

MBLM found companies with stronger brand intimacy generate billions more in overall revenue.  An average Fortune 500 company, for example, would’ve generated $2.9 billion in profit last year had it ranked on the list.

The addition of YouTube to this year’s brand intimacy sheds some light on another recent study.  The Pew Research Center found that 73% of US adults regularly browse YouTube. Facebook, which didn’t make MBLM’s list, had only a 68% share.

Among younger Americans aged 18-24, the YouTube figure skyrocketed to 94%.

Speaking on this year’s unexpected addition of YouTube in the company’s brand intimacy findings, Natarelli explained,

We were surprised and pleased to see YouTube as an addition to the top three most intimate brands for millennials this year.  We believe its rise is due to our culture’s continued need for escape and the brand’s immediate, diverse content, personalities and growing offerings in movies and live TV.  YouTube is clearly an established ritual in the lives of many millennials today.


Featured image by JÉSHOOTS (CC0)

4 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    2007: It’s called a smart phone. It can do everything!

    2018: Stare into the nightmare rectangle and watch society collapse in real time.

    • Paul Resnikoff


      Just read this comment on my smartphone

  2. Anonymous

    I pity anyone who feels “bonded to a brand”.