Nigerians can make anything popular; if we all get behind a brand, that brand is made for life. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that some brands are used as a generic term for certain products or services because of how popular they’ve become.
Here’s a list of some of them:
Long before the power sector was privatized in Nigeria, it was called the National Electric Power Authority (NEPA) in the 70s. However, NEPA has become a huge part of our lingo which is why everyone conveniently forgets that the name ceased to exist when it was changed to the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN).
Now, everyone in Nigeria knows that “Up NEPA” means one thing only–the low voltage and epileptic power supply is back on for everyone to use for few hours.
Due to its popularity as a longstanding brand in the cooking industry, Maggi remains the generic name for every other food seasoning.
Nowadays, vendors always ask you to specify which brand you’re referring to when you ask for Maggi.
As far as Nigerians are concerned, every noodle is Indomie.
So we disregard the fact that Indomie is a brand of noodles because nobody really cares about that distinction; just give us the noodle, let’s eat.
Milo, a Nestle beverage product, has been tagged by many Nigerians as the generic name for every cocoa food drink in the country.
For a while, Jik was leading the pack but Hypo snatched its hat and has made itself the most recognized brand in the bleaching industry. The sad thing is, every other bleaching agent is now called Hypo.
Ask a market woman in Nigeria for a sack and she will correct you, saying; “Do you mean Bagco?”
All hail Gala! This sausage roll brand has become the widespread name for every other sausage roll in Nigeria.
So no matter how hard other companies try to stand out with their brand name, Gala knocks them dead by staying on the lips of every consumer.
Odds are if you ask any Nigerian what their favorite antiseptic brand is, the answer would be, Dettol. This is not because it actually is, but because everyone refers to all antiseptic liquid as Dettol.
If you’re one of those people who automatically think of Macleans when someone says toothpaste, then you sure fit into the category of Nigerians who call every toothpaste Macleans.
Which brand do you think we left out? Let us know in the comments.