Are You Building Brand-cabulary?

Grande. Venti. Trenta.

If this was the year 2002, you would be asking why I was starting a post by testing you on Italian vocabulary (and likely what I thought about Justin and Britney breaking up). But this is 2022, and dollars to doughnuts the second you saw these, you knew I was talking about Starbucks sizes, likely even knowing which size each one represents in “Starbucks speak.”  (We would probably also talk about Britney afterwards, and fist bump that the #FreeBritney movement actually worked.)

Its “brand-cabulary” has even made it into the movies, with this gem being my favorite. When Paul Rudd uses your words and Elizabeth Banks is defending your brand-cabulary; THAT is brand power.

It got me to thinking what other brands have successfully done this in some way or another (outside of the everyday words we use today that are actually brand name like these).

My list to start:

  • At McDonald’s, you know to order a Big Mac or Happy Meal versus cheeseburger with the works or a kid’s meal. At Wendy’s, you know to order a Frosty versus a thick milkshake. Going along this path, at In-n-Out, you know to order something “animal style” versus with the words; at Dairy Queen, you know to order a Blizzard rather than a milkshake with mix-ins, and at Culver’s you know to order a Butter Burger.
  • If in the Star Wars universe, no one needs to explain what the Rebel Resistance is, nor do they have to define Wookie, Padawan, Jedi, Stormtrooper or Ewoks for you.
  • iPhone users drive Android users nuts with their requests to FaceTime constantly, since that isn’t a thing on Android. Same goes for asking for an Air Drop (though we do have our own means to do whatever this is on Android now, I am told).
  • At the department or shoe store, when shopping the Levi’s brand, you likely know what 501, 503 and its other numbers mean (they mean this, buy the way).
  • Many of us also know what it means when someone wants “the red soles,” and while not wholly new words, they made it to the list (FYI Scott, this means Louboutin heels, which famously have red soles no matter the color on top).

Feel free to comment where we post this – Facebook, Instagram, Linked In – with any of yours.

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Photo by kevser on Unsplash

Written by
at Jan 6, 2022

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