Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Product Branding & Crack

By the way, I, and the rest of my law school, was on Spring Break last week. Not that that alone explains the lack of posting but I'm sure it contributed to my laisez faire attitude. Or maybe that should be 'lazy attitude.' Pretty similar in this context. This has nothing to do with the topic of this post, however. ~//~

Yesterday when I purchased my two Snapples from the bookstore, I had a very brief, very minor, nonexistent crisis. I opened one of the plastic bottles (no glass, ugh) of Peach Diet Snapple and had a horrible moment of uncertainty where it tasted somewhat funny. In hindsight, I attribute this to my week of nonconsumption, leading to the temporary amnesia of my taste buds. At the time, I took it to mean that I'd purchased the dreadful NON-DIET version of this Snapple flavor.

You have no idea how far my hopes and dreams fell in that instant. I am an avid drinker of diet sodas and drinks having been raised on such beverages. To inadvertently purchase and subsequently be forced to consume a non-diet Snapple of my favorite flavor is tantamount to drinking light beer. You just don't do it.

So there am I, holding one open bottle in my hand, wondering where my life went wrong to lead me to this aweful state of affairs. Being the practical person I sometimes am, the thought flits through my mind that perhaps I can exchange the unopened bottle for one of the correct denomination. So I walk back down the hall to the bookstore and its refrigerated case to see if they have the appropriate beverage.

At first, I glance inside to the row from which I took the two bottles. I then look elsewhere for the Peach Diet Snapple, as it would appear based on my knowledge of its label design and coloring. My eyes are continually drawn back to the row I used as my mind slowly catches up with my eyes.

Without even realizing it and without actually reading the label, I had procured the correct beverage based solely on my inherent knowledge of the bottle's label design and coloring. Completely on autopilot, I had instinctually reached to the row that I knew should contain the Peach Diet Snapple and took two bottles that displayed the correct label style and colors. 'Lo and behold, they turned out to be the correct drink.

It was at this point that I wanted to smack my forehead and shake my head in insipid disbelief.

How could I not trust that I would instinctually choose and purchase the correct beverage? How could I not believe that in my 25.96 years on this planet, I have now developed to the point where I can and will purchase the beverage which I prefer to consume?

The other thought that ran through my head was to remark on how strong Snapple's product branding is. Without even consciously thinking, I simply selected my beverage of choice based on my unconscious perception of its label. Not solid, some white, peach-colored outline. Period.

That's some strong product branding.

After having written this, now I'm thirsty for some Peach Diet Snapple. Mmmm... Diet Peach Snapple, Diet Coke and the occasional bottle of Stop & Shop Diet Root Beer are all the crack I need in this world. Okay, all the beverage crack. I mean, a guy still needs.. computer games, right?