Animals Can't Drive Utes

Animals Can't Drive UtesI 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.”

Image source: Flickr – Hugo90

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Kevin RobertsKevin Roberts is the CEO worldwide of The Lovemarks Company, Saatchi & Saatchi. For more information on Kevin, please go to To see this blog at its original source, please go to

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1 Comment

  1. Paul Shemella on July 16, 2021 at 2:09 pm

    Was looking for some takes regarding this topic and I found your article quite informative. It has given me a fresh perspective on the topic tackled. Thanks!

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