BrandIndex: UK consumers rate Amazon, Google and BBC iPlayer as 2012 top three best brands so far

The latest YouGov BrandIndex bi-annual league table reveals that Amazon, Google and BBC iPlayer have managed to beat 850-plus brands in order to become the most highly-rated brands in the UK.

The 2012 bi-annual league table, compiled using YouGov’s BrandIndex – a tracker which measures daily perception of brands amongst the public – highlights which consumer brands have been able to cut through and make a positive and lasting impression.

Graph source: CityAM

Back in January – when 2011 rankings were published – Google, Amazon and M&S took first, second and third position respectively. This time around, however, Amazon has managed to overtake Google, and for the first time holds the top spot. M&S has fallen out of the top three, now retaining fourth place, while newcomer BBC iPlayer shoots towards the top, coming in third.

Amazon’s rise to the top re-iterates its dominance in the online retail space. A recent signing with Waterstones to sell its e-reader, alongside the imminent launch of an Android Appstore in Europe further positions themselves as a player – not just in the online retail space – but in the broader tech space more generally.

Despite the BBC brand experiencing its fair share of highs and lows this year – ranging from winning Marketing Week Engage Award’s 2012 Brand of the Year 2012, to public condemnation surrounding its reporting of the Royal Jubilee Pageant – BBC iPlayer has managed to climb into the top 3, while the BBC brand has managed to secure fifth place – further underpinning its status as one of the UK’s masterbrands.

Google maintains a top three position; however, its drop in rank (down six points from 2011 to 2012) indicates that consumer perception of the brand – which many perceive as “untouchable” – is starting to wane. 2012 has not been viewed as a great year for the tech giant; privacy issues earlier in the year, combined with Google+ being widely regarded as a flop, may have dented the brand’s image. Despite this, Google remains in a strong position:  the recent acquisition of Motorola further strengthens its offering (due, in part, to newly-acquired patent access), and innovations such as Google Glasses reinforce the brand's status as pioneers in its field.

Alongside BBC iPlayer, other newcomers to the 2012 ranking include: Samsung (13), Freeview (14) and Dyson (18) – at the expense of Dove, Walkers, Panasonic and Thorntons.

Samsung, in particular, has made a significant impact on consumers in the UK; managing to debut at such a high position in the rankings, the multi-national conglomerate company is also ranked top in the ‘Mobile Telephones’ sector on BrandIndex. After years of trailing competitors in the smartphone and electronics market, Samsung appear to have won consumers over with innovative devices alongside strong marketing campaigns. Samsung’s Galaxy and Smart TV product ranges, in particular, have attributed to the brand’s success, yielding high satisfaction and loyalty amongst consumers – a well-deserved entry in this year’s top 20. 

The fact that there are only three newcomers in this year’s ranking highlights how challenging it can be for a brand to not only cultivate a positive image but retain it.  Indeed, none of the brands in this year’s ranking have managed to improve on their score from 2011. 

Retail and FMCG brands remain a dominant force in the league table, accounting for 12 of the 20 entries. Favourite FMCG brands amongst UK consumers include: Colgate, Cathedral City, Cadbury and Heinz. Five technology brands and two broadcasters (BBC and Channel 4) complete the list.

Sarah Murphy, YouGov’s Associate Director, BrandIndex, commented on the findings: “BBC iPlayer overtaking M&S in the top three demonstrates the great amount that the broadcaster has delivered in the last year, whilst dealing with reduced funding – a great achievement. Despite M&S falling out of the top three, they still have shown great resilience in a sector which has experienced significant declines over the last year. Google’s decline is statistically significant and is driven by all the brand measures that comprise the Index score – this is certainly a brand to watch over the next 6 months.”

YouGov’s BrandIndex measures how consumers perceive brands on a daily basis in terms of quality, value, customer satisfaction, corporate reputation, general impression, and likelihood of consumers to recommend the brand. The average score across these six attributes is taken to create a single composite figure called the Index score.

BrandIndex: Top 20 Brands First-Half 2012: UK (Based on Index score)
Rank Brand Score
1 Amazon 58.1
2 Google 54.8
3 BBC iPlayer 53.7
4 Marks & Spencer 52.2
5 BBC 51.71
6 Heinz 47.9
7 John Lewis 46.5
8 Sony 45.2
9 Boots 43.1
10 Cadbury 42.4
11 Sainsbury's 40.8
12 Channel 4 39.7
13 Cathedral City 38.5
14 Samsung 38.4
15 Maltesers 37.8
16 Colgate 37.4
17 Freeview 37.3
18 Waterstones 37.1
19 Dyson 36.9
20 Bosch 36.6

A summary of these findings, by CEO Stephan Shakespeare, also appears in today's issue of City AM

Go to BrandIndex

For more information please contact YouGov PR Executive Giovanna Clark, +44 (0) 20 7012 6000

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