The exhilarating rush of new love often feels like it will last forever. But anyone in a long-term relationship knows that love's initial flames often die down, replaced by a more stable bond that needs some juicing to stay healthy for the long haul.

Brand relationships are no different. Keeping a fiery connection takes some work.

To unlock long-term love for our brands and set the stage for strong lasting connections, one simply has to look at and apply basic human relationship principles. Here are five ways you can keep the spark alive and forge a devoted, lasting connection to consumers.

1. Spend quality time together

Companies work really hard and spend a lot of time marketing brands. But you can also spend one-on-one active time with your own brand to understand and experience its core behaviors, benefits, and experiences. As a result, you'll truly feel its value and make sure it hasn't lost its way. Whether your category is technology, CPG, or retail, sit with your products, experiences, and expressions and bring an open, objective eye.

Reality show Undercover Boss puts senior management in the trenches to understand the day-to-day realities of experiences they provide, and the people who manage those experiences.

Fast food giants are known for putting management boots on the ground. Domino's CEO and franchise leaders created major waves of change after eating a lot of pizza (and commercialized the transformation) while McDonald's regularly sends corporate staffers into the field to serve.

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image of Christina Papale

Christina Papale is VP of strategy and director of innovation at CBX, a brand agency based in New York.

LinkedIn: Christina Papale