Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Brand Loyalty

Have been reading a lot of branding and loyalty articles lately, mostly out of personal interest after attending a talk about customer loyalty a couple of weeks back.

It made me stop and think of the brands that I am particularly loyal to, and why am I loyal to them in the first place.

Brands I love

Here's my list of favorites:

  • Google. Definitely #1 on my list. I honestly cannot think of a single day when I'm online and do not use a Google service, whether it's to search for something, to check my Gmail, to update my calendar, or simply to blog (Blogger belongs to Google). Strangely, I do not feel the same loyalty to Yahoo, despite the fact that I use Yahoo Messenger more than I use Google Talk.
  • Firefox. The multiple tabs were what first hooked me with the Firefox browser, and all the subsequent updates since then have just kept me loyal. It irks me when I have to launch Internet Explorer to log into my online banking site!
  • Flickr. I have a Flickr pro account. Enough said.
  • Bloglines. My favorite RSS reader, not that I've tried any of the other readers, to be honest. The big thing for me with Bloglines is that it's all online and I can switch from my home computer to my work computer to any other internet cafe computer and still stay up to date with my RSS subscriptions. You'll also find that the blogroll on this blog is powered by Bloglines.
  • Dictionary.com. I think it's safe to say that any netizen who has to do a lot of writing in the English language will automatically love dictionary.com. haha!
  • Fortune Magazine. Have been a Fortune subscriber for more than five years and I expect to continue being one for the forseeable future. The articles are informative, eye-opening, and well-written. I occassionally wish they'd be a little more "new economy" but I do get enough of the latter from other sources, so at least that craving is sated.
Brands I use but don't love

There are a lot of other services that I use regularly, but my user experience has colored or tempered any loyalty that I may feel about the service.

The prime examples in this category are:
  • Friendster. Even though improvements are continuously being rolled out on Friendster, I visit it only very briefly each time. The ads are such a turn-off.
  • Orkut. Orkut is a Google service, yes, but it's one that I never quite got around to using. LinkedIn launched at right around the same time and I ended up using it more simply because the network effect was more interesting there.
  • Yahoogroups. I moderate 14 Yahoogroups and am a member of 43 more, but I just don't feel passionate about the service. It's useful, and I am glad it's there, but it's a constant battle to keep groups on track and limit the presence of trolls. Perhaps that has unfairly colored my appreciation too much.
Current interests, which at the moment can still go either way, are: Twitter, Odeo, Wikipedia, and Vox.