Name a brand of sneaker. Name a flavor of ice cream. Name a dead rock star.
If you came up with answers like Nike, Chocolate or Prince, you’re not alone. This is unaided awareness, the ability to name a member of a category without having to choose from a list.
It’s tempting to want to be the Nike of your category. It really pays off in group situations, where someone wants to be sure to choose an option that ‘everyone has heard of.’
But unaided awareness isn’t a useful goal. Because most decisions that matter aren’t unaided. Most choices are made with some consideration. What people say about you is even more important than being on everyone’s notorious list.