Yeah, I know, i could have picked a Zillion other things to compare, but these are what popped into my Pea Brain.
So, don't shoot the messenger - okay?
© - Tom Hyland - 10-08-08
Have you ever noticed how ‘up tight’ many people become when one either questions, or talks down about something they really like? Brand Loyalty is
a perfect example of dichotomous thinking, or extremism.
One guy will buy nothing but Fords - he swears by them. The other fellow could be his best Buddy, but he will own nothing but Chevies, and says that Fords are Junk-Heaps! So, they argue.
Another man will go out of his way to avoid what he terms as ‘Japanese Junk.’ Yet another has bought several - Hondas, Toyotas, Nissans - and believes they are better made, and much safer than American-made cars.
So, they argue.
I drank Tasters Choice instant coffee ever since it came out, maybe twenty-two years or so ago. Others, visitors in our home, were courteous, but obviously did not like it - too weak, for their tastes. I remember times when my wife would go out in the kitchen and purposely mix up a whole pot of it, add a couple of extra spoons, and bring it out in a coffee pot, or carafe, and guess what - people would say how good this fresh-brewed coffee was, and ask what Brand it was!
As a corollary, I tried instant Maxwell House, Folger’s, some supermarket Generic brands, but nothing satisfied like the one whose taste had pleased me the most throughout all those years. Yep, I’m Human too!
Another example of coffee tastes comes to mind. For many years, whenever we were on the road, or about to leave on a long trip, and both wanted a fresh cup of good coffee, we always stopped at Dunkin’ Donuts. Then, one day, we both agreed - something changed, something was different - it was Weaker! We experienced this at the store on Harford Road, in Hamilton, about three times, and said: “That’s it - no more there!” Then, we tried the store a little farther away, on Belair Road - same thing. One final test at a third store, in Parkville area, and Bingo! Same result!
We figured it out - all three stores had recently been taken over by new Management, and all were people from either India, or Pakistan. Perhaps people accustomed to drinking Tea their entire lives are not connoisseurs of Coffee? They were obviously making the coffee much thinner, or weaker, like tea. Dunkin’ Donuts lost our business for several years, with the exception of an occasional purchase of a pound bag of ground coffee - that was still the best, because no one screwed it up!
Still dealing with coffee, for several years now, when on the road, I purposely only buy cups of coffee at Royal Farms stores, it has always been fresh, and never burned, by sitting on the warmer for several hours. This habit was formed over several years of bad experiences at other stores, like 7-11. This means that I would go out of my way for a Good cup of coffee, avoiding other places like the Plague!
Next, consider buying gasoline. I normally go also to Royal Farms, because usually they are consistently the cheapest. Others only buy Name Brands, like: Amoco, Citgo, Exxon, or whatever - WHY? Could it be that some people actually believe the BS ads, like this has XYZ additive, or higher octane, or such-and-such special ingredient, which will …. That is all they will buy.
What causes this strong Brand Loyalty?
Could it possibly be all the ‘Brain-Washing’ we are bombarded with, via commercials, ad nauseam? Moreover, even though subliminal messages were banned some years ago, is anyone actually monitoring this practice? I wonder!
How about other things, like: cameras, cell-phones, computers, and televisions? Some will only buy a Nikon, but not a Canon - or one woman will choose a Nokia phone, while another wants a Motorola, or Samsung. For many years, IBM was the big name in Personal Computers, then Clones came out, and were cheaper - now, many people prefer Apple computers over those with MSN software, like Windows. I switched to an Apple iBook G4 Laptop a few years ago, and have never regretted it.
The list of Name Brands in every possible consumer product is almost endless:
Cosmetics, Pharmaceuticals, Sodas, Juices, Bottled Waters, and the shelves in every Supermarket cry to us, with every imaginable name Brand - BUY ME -
BUY ME! Have you ever wondered, or bothered to really READ the labels on generic brands? Just Who do you think makes them? Couldn’t possibly be another advertising ‘gimmick’ could it? Like maybe the Same manufacturer, getting the Best of Both Worlds? DUH!
As I stated previously, millions of human beings somehow become so Loyal to a certain Brand, for any number of reasons, that they will actually argue and fight to prove that their choice is the only right one! Let me explain adamantly why you are Wrong - and I am Right!
Or, how about: Books, Authors, Music, Videos, Restaurants, Musicals, Plays, Operas, Ballets, Composers, Bands, Singers, Orchestras, Doctors, Lawyers, Indian Chiefs, and last, but by no means least - Politicians, and Candidates!
My guy is Right - and here is Why, and if you can’t See it, you must be Stupid or something! That’s invariably a real Win-Win situation, isn’t it?
Brand Loyalty - in the immortal words of Shakespeare’s Puck -
“What Fools These Mortals Be!”