Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Mind share

Advertising ultimately seeks to establish what is called mind share (or share of mind). When people think of examples of a type or category of product, they think of a limited list (referred to as an evoked set). Any product included in an evoked set has mind share. The more easily remembered (referred to as top of mind), the greater the share of mind of that product. Marketers try to maximize their product's share.

Dominant mind share

At the extreme, mind share is the status a brand can achieve when it co-exists with deeper, more empirical categories of objects. Kleenex, for example, can distinguish itself as a type or brand of tissue. But, because it has gained significant mind share amongst consumers, it is frequently used as a term to identify any tissue, even if it is from an opposing brand. One of the most successful firms to have achieved this is Hoover, whose name was for a very long time synonymous with vacuum cleaner (and Dyson has subsequently managed to achieve similar status, having moved into the Hoover market with a more sophisticated model of vacuum cleaner). Mind share can be established to a greater or lesser degree depending on product and market. In Texas, for example, it is common to hear people refer to any soft drink as a Coke, regardless of whether it is actually produced by Coca-Cola or not (the more accurate term would be 'cola').

Legal Risk

A legal risk of having dominant mind share is that the name can become so widely accepted that it becomes a generic term, and loses trademark protection (referred to as a genericized trademark). Examples include: See also: advertising, promotion, marketing, genericized trademark

List of Marketing TopicsList of Management Topics
List of Economics TopicsList of Accounting Topics
List of Finance TopicsList of Economists

Alternative usage

In popular lexicon, a group of people who operate with a great deal of synergy can be thought of as having a mind share. This is the ideal state of a group.