Daney Parker, Editor, PRmoment.com
Keeping your branding simple pays dividends and according branding firm Siegel+Gale’s latest World’s Simplest Brands Index, Netflix is considered the UK’s simplest brand. This is followed by Google in second place (no change from last year) whilst other brands that have moved into the top five are Ikea, Aldi and Asda.
Why simplicity pays
- Growth: Since 2009, a stock portfolio comprised of the publicly traded simplest brands in the global Top 10 has outperformed the major indexes by 686%
- Loyalty: 64% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand because it’s simple
- Premium: 55% of consumers are willing to pay more for simpler experiences
Global highlights Top 10 brands
UK Top 10 brands
Discussing exactly why simplicity translates into profits and how PROs are vital for communicating a brand’s simplicity, Ben Osborne, head of insights, EMEA at Siegel+Gale, says: “At the heart of the comms industry is an unspoken contract between creators and consumers. Consumers are pitched new products, influenced and informed, on the condition that the interaction is simple, honest, informative and at times fresh or enjoyable. When the content or medium of communication becomes complex, misleading, irrelevant or contrived, then this contract is broken.”
Talking about one of the largest PR failures of last year, Osborne says: “Facebook’s PR disaster saw around $130bn wiped from the company’s market value in 2018 – however the financial community still valued the company at more than $400bn. Around the same time that the Cambridge Analytica story broke, Facebook posted a 42% increase in advertising revenues year-on-year – showing loyalty from media buyers. In contrast, Facebook fell to within the bottom three of the World’s Simplest Brand ranking for both the USA and UK. Without the foundation of trust or any feeling of empathy towards users, people are finding it harder and harder to consume messages and information from the brand.”
Osborne concludes that life is hard enough without brands making it more complicated: “Our research shows us that 55% of consumers are willing to reward brands that make their lives simpler – and penalise those that do not. Simplicity is an important metric for the communications industry because empathy is the cornerstone of the contract between creators and consumers.”
The Siegel+Gale World’s Simplest Brands study has been conducted since 2009 as a way of understanding the value that simplicity brings to companies. 15,750 consumers from nine countries evaluate 800 brands against five dimensions of simplicity:
- Ease of understanding what is communicated
- Transparency and honesty in what is communicated
- Usefulness of the information
- Innovation and freshness of the experience
- Empathy with and fulfilment of relevant customer needs.
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