The brand name pampers. has become synonymous with the word nappies in many countries. Why is that? We can only say a big well done to the Pampers nappy brand. Another beautiful example is the well-known brand Jacuzzi, which has become synonymous with hot tub.
Procter & Gamble
Pampers® (the R represents registered trademark) is a registered trademark of the company Procter & Gamble. The well-known brands Fairy®, Pringles®, Ariel® en Gilette® are part of the portfolio of this American company. There is a correlation between the strength of a brand name and the value of the company. The stronger the brand, the more the company is worth. According to the article attached the worth of the Pampers® brand is estimated between 10 and 15 billion dollars for Procter & Gamble.
Source: Dove or Pampers? The strongest Unilever brands lose out to those of major competitor Procter & Gamble (businessinsider.nl) In this article we can see that the position of Pampers® is declining on the list as a result of a decreasing market share in the US.
Companies have their name registered by a trademark registration service. By registering a trademark, the trademark holder will obtain the exclusive right to use this name. But you can also register colour (combinations), sounds, music tunes, and shapes. Depending on the sector in which you want to market the brand you can have your trademark registered in the Benelux, in Europe, in the US, in China, or even the whole world. Pampers® is a leading world brand. If another company uses the trademark, international law will establish infringement of the trademark. The registered trademark holder can summon the other company to stop the use immediately or even claim damages.
Every company aims to make its brand as distinctive as possible and gain maximum brand awareness through advertising. But the pitfall is the trademark becoming genericised due to its popularity.
Genericide is when the trademark of a product or service has become so popular that it becomes synonymous with the product or service. The trademark loses its specific meaning for the brand that it originally belonged to. Bron: Legalloyd Blog – Genericide
Some examples of genericide are: Kleenex® is synonymous with tissues, Google® for looking something up on the internet, Jacuzzi® for hot tub and Sellotape® for sticky tape. For more exmaples of genericide please see the following link. Source: List of trademarks that have become generic – Wikipedia
In this list, you can see that Pampers® has also become genericised. Proctor & Gamble was one of the first, if not the first, companies to market the disposable nappy with amazing success. The name pamper has become synonymous over the years with the disposable nappy.
Risks of a (too) strong brand like Pampers
The greatest risk for the trademark holder is when his registered trademark becomes a generic name and it is at risk of losing its trademark rights. The trademark holder, therefore, has no choice but to be tough on companies, usually competitors, using its registered trademark unlawfully. You can understand that the difference between brand name and trademark is a very fine line. The court will consider if the competitor has attempted to create confusion with consumers and/or if the brand has caused any reputational damage.
We can unambiguously conclude that the right word is Nappies. There are many different Nappy brands on the market like different store brands and of course our GhaZoo Nappies. However, the Pampers brand has become so popular that consumers have started using the brand name synonymously.