“I don’t understand why you would buy Fiji water Melanie, it supports a fascist government.”
My roommate comments on my purchasing choice after I come back from Whole Foods, carrying in a 1L bottle of Fiji water. I think to myself, she’s right. Why would I spend $3 on a bottle of water that doesn’t even have any good cause to it? Does it even taste any different?
I notice a specifically strong force within me that screams when I roll my shopping cart into the bottled water aisle. The sticker of tropical leaves and bright flowers in a uniquely shaped bottle catches my attention. Ooh, I think, brought straight from the islands of Fiji. And plus, after reading an article like this I definitely want to stick to my bottles of exotic water.
After closer examination of my purchasing behavior, I notice that it is not in fact a brand loyalty I have to Fiji water, but good design in general: enter Voss water.
Voss water is only available in some specialty stores, namely in Whole Foods. An admirer of good minimalist design, a bottle of Voss water costs around $3.14 plus tax. If I was to consumer just one bottle a day, that would amount to $1,146.10 a year. A thousand dollars a year on a small bottle of water in a glass. What insanity! But look at the bottle, with its sleek, elegant design. The embossed “VOSS” lettering on the bottle with a silver screw on top. With my love for gray and minimalist design, Voss water is my savior in a world of strange colors and comic sans lettering.
Bottled water in any form also carries an image in each of their bottles. Fiji and Evian carry a sense of exotic faraway-ness that watch and car companies also embody. Aquafina, the official sponsor of the MLB carries a pure, water-for-athletes image that may appeal to people who are more active. Companies place stronger brand identity to everyday items like bottled water than products that speak for themselves like Midol, Kleenex, or Crayola. This branding effort does not go unnoticed for marketing majors like myself. I want to become one with the luxury and exoticism of Fiji and Voss water, because carrying around bottles of water with a brand, associates myself with it.