Drive Them Wild: The Principles of a Brand That Customers Obsess Over

Margo Jay
7 min readFeb 11, 2021

As Marketers, we spend a lot of time thinking about how we can become the next “it” brand, the name on everyone’s lips. We want to be more than household names-we want to define our categories, to become not just brands but verbs. Think about Google-it’s so much more than a brand name. We don’t tell each other to “search it”-we say “Google it!”

There are other brands that have infiltrated the public consciousness like this. We tell people to grab a Kleenex, not a tissue; you’ll take a Tylenol, not an acetaminophen tablet. You’ll buy a Coke, not a cola.

You get the picture. These brands become so engrained people don’t even think of their products as separate from their names.

More than that, though, we want to become brands that our customers obsess over. We want them to actively think about us and what we offer them. We want to be not the default choice, but the active choice. So how do we achieve that? We can use the following principles to drive our customers wild and create a new obsession with our brands.

The Five Principles of Brand Obsession

Any brand obsession will spring from these five principles. When we lay the groundwork, we can build brands that our customers want to make part of their daily lives.

1. What We Offer

The first principle is likely the most obvious one. We have to offer something that makes the customer’s life better in some way. That can be a product or service, but it has to do something for them.

We often think that this is whatever direct benefit of the product itself. More often than not, the biggest benefit is something more intangible. Tylenol offers pain relief, but it’s also trusted medicine. We rely on Google to give us the right results. We expect innovation from Apple. Cosmetics brand LUSH delivers high-quality products with a commitment to social justice.

The benefits aren’t just what the product does. Benefits are also emotional impacts that a customer gets from using the products or teaming up with our brand.

2. Focus on the Customer

Margo Jay

Marketing & Brand Expert | Customer Empath | Master Strategist | Deeper Insight | Finding extraordinary value | Driving competitive advantage |