By now, we all have an idea about the brands which seem to be "on our side"; the ones which fit in with the needs of our family, offering a helping hand and top discounts which just can't be ignored.
Most of us have our favourites, those we feel we can rely on when times are tough and those which seem to make planning a budget a far more achievable task.
And now we can see for ourselves the companies which are making the best efforts in helping us as mums and dads, with the release of ad agency Isobel's 2011 Family Brands report.
Compiled with the help of information gleaned from 1,500 adults, the line up was determined through accounts of the brands seen as being "socially responsible", "good listeners" and "caring".
It has never been more important to shop around for the best deals in these times of economic uncertainty, so M&S's position at the top of the pile shows a genuine commitment to being family-centric.
Other brands of note to rise high in the 2011 chart include John Lewis and Innocent - while Boots and Tesco lost some ground on the up-and-comers.
Steve Hastings of Isobel said: "Now three years in to our Family Brands survey we are seeing a clear pattern emerging with Britain's favourite family brands being identified year-after-year. We believe in harder times people fall back on brands they trust, brands they are familiar with and brands they feel at home with.
"That's why some brands this year have fallen sharply - people feel they have abused their trust."