Long-term brands and relationships are built on alignment. Here are a few examples (“I” is the royal I, not me in particular):
A perfect relationship: I want your company to help me, and your company wants to help me. We’re both focused on helping the same person.
The Walmart relationship: I want the cheapest possible prices and Walmart wants to (actually works hard to) give me the cheapest possible prices. That’s why there’s little pushback about customer service or employee respect… the goals are aligned.
The Apple relationship: I want Apple to be cool. Apple wants to be cool. That’s why there’s little pushback on pricing or obsolence or disappointing developers.
The demagogue politician relationship: I will feel more powerful if you get elected and get your way. You will feel more powerful if you get elected and get your way.
The search engine relationship (when it’s working): I want to find what I’m looking for. You want me to find what I’m looking for, regardless of the short-term income possibilities.
The Mercedes (formerly Cadillac) relationship: I want a prestige product that reliably delivers an expensive label that’s unattainable to many. They want to reliably and consistently charge a lot for a car that sends a message to everyone else.
The farmer’s market relationship: I want to eat sustainable foods that make me feel good. You want to grow sustainable foods that make me feel good.