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The Top 8 Brand Names Used To Define Entire Product

The ultimate compliment to any company is when the general public, or the vast majority, begins to use one of its brand names to define an entire product category. Here is a list of eight brand names you probably use as a genericized trademark to define an entire product category:

1. Kleenex

Although Kleenex also makes paper towels, bath tissues and diapers, their brand name is used synonymously to define the entire facial tissue industry. Even generic facial tissues, which typically don’t have the same high quality, get the compliment of being called a Kleenex.

2. Popsicle

Since the introduction of Popsicle 1922, the brand name has grown to define the entire ice pop industry and has even expanded into a state of being – “Since my heater broke, I’ve been a popsicle all winter.” Ok, so maybe that’s a stretch… Maybe not…

3. Tupperware

Every holiday season, my mom reminds me to bring home some Tupperware so that I can take home leftovers. I actually don’t own any Tupperware, but the brand’s name has become the staple name for the vast majority of plastic storage containers. It’s wonderful for Tupperware, but I’m sure the marketers at Rubbermaid hate when they hear their products called by another brand name.

4. Coke (Coca-Cola)

As the world’s best known soda, the brand name Coke dominates the cola industry. Enough said.

5. Google

“Just Google it” has become a common phrase to tell people to perform an online search. When “Google” first began to be used as a verb, you could almost hear the executives at Yahoo and Ask crying in their offices. Will Google continue to dominate, or do you think it is possible that 10 years from now “Just Bing it” will be the popular saying? I doubt it, but kudos to Microsoft for their efforts.

6. Xerox

Xerox is another “brand-name-turned-verb.” As the original manufacturer of plain paper photocopiers, the brand name is often used as a synonym for “photocopy.” There a numerous companies that make plain paper photocopiers now-a-days, but none that can rival Xerox’s dominance as a the photocopy verb.

7. Starbucks

Starbucks has stores all over the world and has quickly become a household name for coffee. Maybe it’s because of their rapid growth or the fact that they make delicious coffee, but many people no longer say “Let’s grab a coffee,” rather, they say “Let’s grab a Starbucks.” Here’s a great picture of Starbucks that I took last year in England:

8. Ziploc

People don’t just put thing into sandwich bags, they put them into Ziploc bags. And, although they are public enemy number one to many environmentalists, the brand name continues to hold its title as sandwich bag king.