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Notorious Bigi by Femi Bejide

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Last Saturday, our office mai guard taught me a good lesson on brand loyalty:

Before leaving office, my CTO and I asked him to help buy two bottles of Coke. A few minutes later, he returned with bigi-cola, announcing, "Oga, na him be this"

“Megida!” I shouted, “No be wetin I send you be this!’”
“Oga, dem be the same tin, Coke and bigi na the same…but this one plenty pass”

Yesterday, while observing traffic hawkers, it hit me (almost like I just saw a baba ijebu guy, shouting ‘gif me numba’ while wearing a dirty version of my designers shirt) that my darling coke brand was losing its loyalty in the low-end market where price per volume rules.

Even though Coke and Pepsi have since responded, I feel their hitherto keen focus on the high-end section, had allowed others, like bigi and big cola, to slowly gain share of the CSD market.

In 2002, while interning at British Tobacco. I asked a Snr. manager why BAT spends fiercely on low-end brands as much as the big brands with high margin.

She smiled: “Femi, new competitors are like ants who will more easily enter your house than antelopes...”

Dear CEO, have a clear strategy for every segment you play in, or your customers, like me, might soon start humming that 1997 hit track, 'bigi, bigi, bigi, can’t you see…'

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