In the 2015 Annual Index of Meaningful Brands, consumer attachment to major brands is measured. Interestingly, what the study found this year is surprising – only 5% of brands in the U.S. would really be missed by consumers.
The survey, which normally covers approximately 1,000 brands across 12 industries and 300,000 individuals did happen to show a bit more brand “love” globally, at 25%. This is presumably because brands could be more sparse in other areas – and – generally, brand trust is higher in other countries than in the U.S.
This is all quite surprising for an industry (marketing and advertising) spending nearly $600 billion every year. Despite viewability, reach, frequency, and all the other things advertisers would be unwise not to care about, it seems like many brands have put too many “eggs in one basket” so to speak. While your customers will certainly interact with you online through various channels and across devices, and you should certainly market to them, what this study says essentially is that your brand isn’t as important to your customers as you might think it is.
But is that really true?
The study claimed that essentially, people care more about brands that “focus on improving society and making our lives easier and healthier.” It’s no wonder, then, that brands like Google are leading the pack. However, the list is also scattered with companies such as Nestle, who haven’t had as much luck as Google at satisfying this health and society-improving requirement.
Another interesting fact to note about this study that in many cases, a parent company’s brand was attached to the parent company, and in other cases only a respective brand owned by a parent brand (like Unilever’s Dove hygiene line, for instance).
This study also appears to be tightly confined to consumer brands. What about brands that offer an experience, like Apple, Facebook, or your University, public media organization, or business? Ask an NPR fan how they feel about NPR, or a sports fan about their favorite basketball team. Ask an Apple user why they bought their iPhone. It’s definitely not going to be about the product, but about that association.
That is why adding meaning to your brand is so important. Through digital marketing, you can leverage advanced digital marketing technology to deliver an engaging story about your brand through multiple touchpoints, give it context and engaging with your customers and potential customers.