Australia’s leading brands losing their credibility

March 29, 2022 1:01 am0 commentsViews:
Australia’s leading brands are losing their credibility with consumers with one in five plainly heading the wrong way, according to the latest Brand Asset Valuator (BAV) report.

BAV is the world’s largest database of brands. The 2011/12 study, conducted by Brand Asset Consulting late last year, surveyed 5000 Australian consumers online for their views on more than 1300 brands across 121 different categories.

“There are several factors contributing to this decline. Chief among them is that the bar for leadership has risen. And the need for innovation is too often sacrificed in the pressured quest for sales. Widespread discounting has also undermined what some brands actually stand for,” says BAC’s director Keith Newton.

Also, consumers’ trust in leading brands is on a rapid decline. “The trust gap that has been seen in Government, Institutions and Corporations has now spread to Australian brands.

According to the BAV study trust in brands has declined 22 per cent in the last two years with financial services, insurance, retailers and utilities bearing the brunt of consumer anger in response to constant price hikes, confusing offers and lack of customer service.

Newton believes many brands are failing to protect themselves from ‘own brand’ threats. “The leading supermarkets are strong brands, and so are their better own label offerings. Once their product marketing improves, the brands that have failed to build brand strength will really feel the heat, and those who play close to a commodity game will be hurt even more by the home brand price offerings.

“The pressure for sales is a given. And while a value approach can work well in certain circumstances, in some sectors it is going too far. The milk market is a classic example. The supermarkets have severely hurt the value of many milk brands. For proof look no further than Kirin’s recent massive write down of financial brand value,” he says.

For the second year the tech darlings, Google, and Apple dominated the brand rankings with 12 of the top 20 differentiated brands (from iPhone to Youtube to Google Maps) coming from their portfolios. While it’s been trending for some years now, the latest BAV has confirmed the dominance of the ‘creative class’ - brands that have a creative, visionary or pioneering spirit. Lego and Ikea are also delivering brilliantly on these criteria.

And retail is not the disaster zone that many claim. Newton says that Gap, Zara, Lululemon, Abercrombie and Fitch,, Victoria’s Secret, and ASOS are powering up the Australian BAV Brand Strength axis driven by the interest of younger Australian women.

And in one of the most surprising findings from the latest BAV Australian study, US President Barack Obama has emerged as a great leader brand.

“Australians see him as an intelligent, progressive, leader imbued with dynamism, vision and charm. A leader for the creative age,” says Newton.

“As the sands of consumer values shift, maybe some of our Australian marketers would benefit by adding Obama to the list of ideal brands that can inspire their marketing discussions.”

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