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Strategy 10 popular trademarked brands in Nigeria that have become household names

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These 10 famous brands that have become household names as a result of their popularity amongst competing brands.

10 popular trademarked brands turned household names in Nigeria play

These 10 famous brands that have become household names as a result of their popularity amongst competing brands.

(MIG Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram)

 

  • 10 big brand names in Nigeria have become generic words for a type of product as a result of their popularity amongst the populace.

  • Although Maggi is a registered trademark of Nestle Nigeria, for many consumers, the word has become interchangeable with "cooking seasoning."


Several brand names in Nigeria have become generic words for a type of product as a result of genericization - when the public associates the brand name with the generic class of product itself.

For a long time, a company's product that is able to attain high popularity risks genericization.

From Maggi, Closeup, and Omo, these brands have had their downside to being successful.

Although Maggi is a registered trademark of Nestle Nigeria, for many consumers, the word has become interchangeable with "cooking seasoning."

Interestingly, there some brand names that have turned into ordinary words and used frequently across the world.

Unknown to many, common word like kerosene and escalator were once trademarked.

Here’s a list of 10 famous brands that have become genericized having been trademarked at some point:

Maggi

play Maggi cubes (ECPlaza)
 

Introduced in: 1950s 

Company: Nestlé Central & West Africa

What it's supposed to be called: Stock cubes

Maggi cooking seasoning was marketed as the best seasoning in cubes to give every African cooking a unique taste. It was further marketed as a substitute for local cooking seasoning and its sales not only skyrocketed but garnered its popularity in Nigeria and other West African countries. Eventually, Maggi became a victim of its own success: its product was so popular that "Maggi" became interchangeable with cooking seasoning in general.

Macleans

play Macleans toothpaste (GSK)
 

Introduced in: 1978

Company: GlaxoSmithKline Nigeria

What it's supposed to be called: Toothpaste

The brand Macleans had a rivalry with Close Up so much that there were only two kinds of toothpaste in Nigeria. It was either Closeup or Macleans. So popular was the toothpaste brand that it becomes difficult for a large number of Nigerians to differentiate between the brand product from its competitors. The toothpaste line is manufactured and trademarked by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria Plc.

Jeep

10 popular trademarked brands turned household names in Nigeria play Jeep (MIG Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram)
 

Introduced in: 1940

Company: American Bantam Car Company

What it's supposed to be called: Sports utility vehicle

To an average Nigerian, any sports utility vehicle from any automobile brand remains a “jeep.” Though Chrysler was not the creator of the Jeep, the automobile company has gone to great advertising lengths to ensure no other sports utility vehicle masquerades as a 4x4. The word “jeep” is commonly used for all forms of sport utility vehicles from Toyota to Ford and Range Rover.

Close Up

play Close Up (Hebron Mart)
 

Introduced in: 1967

Company: Unilever

What it's supposed to be called: Toothpaste

The brand Close Up is so popular that it became difficult for several Nigerians to differentiate between the brand product from its competitors. For 51 years, the popularity of the grew so much despite the obvious fact that it is trademarked by Unilever.

NEPA

play NEPA (How2bcool)
 

Introduced in: 1973

Company: Electric Corporation of Nigeria, later the National Electric Power Authority and now Power Holding Company of Nigeria.

What it's supposed to be called: Power holding company, the electricity company

The legendary birth of the NEPA in 1973 (Electric Corporation of Nigeria, and the Niger Dam Authority merger) gave way to one of the most popular words in Nigeria till date. Today, the brand NEPA has given way to the Power Holding Company of Nigeria after privatisation, but when there is a power outage, Nigerians are quick to blame NEPA.

Omo

play OMO detergent (RichardinKenya)
 

Introduced in: 1960

Company: Unilever.

What it's supposed to be called: Laundry detergent

Not many people know that Omo, the popular laundry detergent which has become a household name, actually means Old Mother Owl. This very popular brand of detergent was firmly rooted in the consciousness of so many Nigerians till the late 2000s when other detergents started getting the relevance. Still one of the most popular detergent brands in Nigeria, Omo is trademarked by Unilever and first launched in Africa in 1953 in Kenya.

Kerosene

play Lanterns use kerosene (YouTUbe)
 

Introduced in: 1854

Company: Abraham Gesner (inventor)

What it's supposed to be called: Combustible hydrocarbon liquid, paraffin (UK)

Kerosene, a critical source of energy for the several people of the world, who lack access to electricity. Not many would believe that kerosene was actually a brand name for a number of years before it was eventually genericized, and no longer protected. It is used to power lanterns and cooking stoves, thereby emitting carbon. Though it has been condemned by environmentalists, Kerosene is used for space heaters and jet fuel, it is yet to leave homes in many parts of Africa.

Google

play Google (VideBlocks)
 

Introduced in: 1998

Company: Google

What its supposed to be called: search engine, searching the internet (as a verb)

The Google brand's meteoric rise to become the world’s leading search-engine has also led to the company’s fair share of hurdles that comes with fame. So much is Google’s dominance and popularity that the brand name became a verb worldwide with many Nigerians using the word "google" to mean to look up on the internet, regardless of which search engine is used. Despite the ubiquity of the term, Google till protect its trademark even after they turn into generic verbs.

Jacuzzi

 

Introduced in: 1956

Company: Jacuzzi

What it's supposed to be called: Hot tub

When Jacuzzi brothers created a hot tub equipped with a hydrotherapy pump, little did they know that their tub will become a household name in Nigeria and the world at large. Interestingly, the tub was created to relieve a family member's rheumatoid arthritis symptoms but turned out to the revolution in the art of relaxation. Only a few know that the Jacuzzi brand also manufactures showers and toilets.

Photoshop

play Adobe Photoshop (Colorlib)
 

Introduced in: 1990

Company: Adobe Systems

What its supposed to be called: Photo-manipulation software

Whenever a picture appears to have been manipulated with the use of a software, it is generally tagged with a photoshop picture. So much is the popularity of the brand name that in some cases it is used as a verb - can you photoshop this picture. Adobe, reports say, is fighting tooth and nail to keep "Photoshop" from becoming a generic term for any photo-manipulation software. The company prefers it when the brand name is used in the following context: "The image was enhanced using Adobe Photoshop software."