Which brand attributes define leadership on the brand finance® global 500
Alongside this year’s launch of the Brand Finance® Global 500 in February, BAV looked at the overall brand equity and key brand personality attributes among the top 10 brands to identify brand commonalities among the leaders, irrespective of category and geography. To define brand leadership, BAV looked at the performance of each brand using our BrandAsset® Valuator PowerGrid, at the primary emotional attributes shared between the leading brands, and how these translate into consumer brand preference.
To assess total brand equity, BAV utilizes the BrandAsset® Valuator PowerGrid, which charts the strength of brands based on 4 dimensions, or Brand Pillars. The top 10 brands on the Global 500 enjoy rarefied placement in the most-desirable, upper-right quadrant, which includes both Leadership and Mass Market brands. In these areas, each of these top 10 brands score high on the 4 BAV Brand Pillars:
1. Energized Differentiation – The top brands are highly differentiated in their respective categories, contributing to pricing power and increased intangible brand value. At its core, Energized Differentiation means being different with momentum, or getting consumers excited about the brand.
2. Relevance – The top brands are highly relevant to consumers, who use the brands in their lives daily.
3. Esteem – Consumers are proud to be associated with the top brands and hold these brands in high esteem. Esteem is a measure of respect, admiration and reverence for a brand, and translates to loyalty.
4. Knowledge - The top brands are also well-known. Consumers seek to get intimately familiar with these brands, feeling the brands are differentiated, relevant and held in high esteem.
The foundation of the BAV model is 48 emotional imagery attributes that collectively dimensionalize and define brand personality. The top brands on the Global 500 have many similar attributes attached to them by consumers; in 2016, the leading companies were perceived as Reliable, Original and High Quality. Perhaps reflecting a tumultuous year on the global geopolitical scene, consumers in 2016 put less emphasis on ‘softer’ attributes such as Glamour, Style and Trendiness, instead preferring Straightforward and Trustworthy brands.
On a global stage where there is geographic, economic, and political uncertainty, brands that work to reinforce key attributes that drive Energized Differentiation are poised to continue dominating their industries. When looking at the Energized Differentiation of the top 10, the higher the Energized Differentiation, the higher the preference among consumers. Again noting that Energized Differentiation means being different with momentum – this momentum translates into preference, usage, and ultimately loyalty among customers.
While brand strength in 2017 may be determined by new sentiment and attributes, the underlying foundations of brand leadership on the Brand Finance® Global 500 demonstrate that at the core, the brands with the highest Energized Differentiation are the ones that resonate with consumers by demonstrating leadership and independence without sacrificing performance or vision.