For many, Starbucks is a default brand. They stop in every single morning, out of routine, and grab the usual. By default. Is it the best they could get, the most convenient, the most value -- maybe not. It's just the usual.
We probably all have certain default brands. Brands we just automatically choose. Toothpaste, laundry detergent, breakfast cereal. Is this good?
Yes and no. On the one hand, it smacks of brand loyalty. Something had to have happened to spark the continued usage. Somewhere along the line there was trial, satisfaction, and repeat.
But that's not enough for me -- it sounds lazy and disengaged. Not good, not bad, not bad enough to switch. It's opening up a competitive opportunity. As soon as something better does come along, guess what? Gone is the default brand.
I'd rather be an engaged brand. One that is changing dynamically all the time. One that infiltrates my consumer's life and grows with her. Changes with her. Becomes one with her. One that is not a default, but a daily choice. A conscious decision to choose because it is the best. Continually the best. Now that's brand loyalty that could never be challenged.
For me personally, that's my Paul Smith shirts. Love them. They are not default, but a conscious choice every season and every day. I'm fully engaged and they have become a part of my own personal brand. Nothing habitual about it at all. Very conscious actually.
Now it is true that one man's default brand may be another man's engaged brand, and that's ok. It's called targeting and personal choice!
What are your brands -- what's your experience? Jim.