Junk Food Earns High Marks
In addition to Hershey’s Kisses, several other products in the “junk food” category made this year’s EquiTrend top 25 brand ranking. They include number two brand M&M Plain Chocolate Candy and number three brand Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Candy Bars. In addition, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups came in at number six, Oreo at number nine, Snickers at number 16, Coca-Cola at number 17, Hershey’s Chocolate Chips at number 23, and M&M Peanut Chocolate Candy at number 24. More than one-third of the top 25 brands were junk food.
The More Things Change…
Certain brands have managed to hold the top-ranked spot within their categories uninterrupted for years. These include Coca-Cola, Visa, Duracell, Sony, Tide, Kleenex, Hallmark and Subway.
Toyota, which received the top-ranked spot in the non-luxury automotive manufacturer category, was ranked just before the current controversy involving vehicle recalls broke out. This ranking will provide a baseline to measure the impact on Toyota’s brand equity.
The lowest rated brands in the study come from the cigarette companies, online dating sites, online universities and the financial sector.
Passikoff analyzed the results of the recent 2010 Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index and found that a real brand can provide meaningful differentiation and act as a surrogate for value, but that value is being carefully examined, category-by-category, and purchase-by-purchase. In terms of retail trends and consumer spending, the leverage of brand has reached its highest level of consequence since the 1960s.
About the Survey: This year’s EquiTrend study was conducted online among 19,708 US consumers ages 15 and up between January 12-21, 2010. The total number of brands rated was 1,151. Each respondent was asked to rate a total of 60 randomly selected brands. Each brand received approximately 1,000 ratings. Data were weighted to be representative of the entire U.S. population of consumers ages 15 and over on the basis of age sex, education, race/ethnicity, region, and income, and data from respondents ages 18 and up were also weighted for their propensity to be online.