I was doing my groceries the other day. As I was heading purposefully towards the cooking oil section, I was disappointed to find that the brand of the cooking oil I wanted was not available. As I ponder my options in front of thirty different brands, I was about to give up and walk away without my cooking oil today. Another day, perhaps. Or maybe they have it in another supermarket across the street?
Then it struck me that I have a particular favourite brand, not because I love the taste of it – vegetable cooking oil (it’s okay, but to me, oil is oil unless it’s olive oil or canola oil), but because I identify that brand with my mum’s cooking when I was young. My mum stopped cooking when I was seven years old because she went back to the workforce and held two jobs. So my early memories of cooking connected with that particular brand of cooking oil.
I started to evaluate all my choices. My mum uses the rice, milk, sugar, and most things in my basket. I did deviate from my regular choices when I was working in Shanghai, mainly because it wasn’t readily available in the country. When it was, it will be exorbitantly expensive because it is a foreign brand. However, when I relocated to Malaysia, where the Asian branded goods are much more readily accessible, I switched back to the same old brand.
That is very good, long term brand marketing. It breeds familiarity by associating the brand with my happy childhood. My mum in the kitchen, preparing meals for me. Subconsciously I become a loyal customer when it is my turn to take over the kitchen. The cooking oil brand is not the only one. Out of the kitchen, I see our television is the same brand that my dad swore by it for years that Panasonic is the best brand for electronics. Even when technology and electronics evolved over the year, many brands come and go; my dad insisted Panasonic is the only brand you should get for television.
Fortunately, my family wasn’t into digital technology when I was growing up. Instead, I got to experience the merits of different OS and settled down nicely with my Mac. Probably forever.
Now I take a good long look at myself passing down the same brand loyalty to my child. Heck, I’m supposed to pass down good morals and values, not brand marketing.
Throw products at me, and instantly, I associate the brand that goes with the product. Let me give you a few examples:
Fried Chicken – KFC Kentucky Fried Chicken
Pizza – Pizza Hut
Bicycle – BMX
Furniture – IKEA
Chocolate – Cadbury
Chips – Pringles
Milk – Marigold
Cereal – Nestle
Sneakers – Nike
At four years old, my girl knows the difference between a Apple store and a competitor store. She will shriek with delight if she saw a Apple store and pulled me towards it as if it sells toys or candies. Her head won’t even turn if she were to walk by an Android store. Sorry, Samsung…
She loves the big red and yellow cheerfulness in McDonald’s over any other fast food (I think it just might be the lure of Happy Meals toy) or maybe because their restaurants are just everywhere.
As she grows up, I believe she will pick up some of my favourite brands and find out some on her own. Hopefully, she will still remember that good brand marketing is not about how expensive their products are but the quality of after services they provide.
What are the brands that you remain stubbornly loyal to? Come and share this tidbit with us in the comments below!
Interested in marketing and how it affect our lives? Check out these articles:
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Simplify and Strategize Your Reward Programs for Building Loyalty
Luxury Brand Does Not Equal To Customer Service