Apple is fastest growing brand by value in Interbrand’s 2012 study

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Apple is the fastest growing brand, according to Interbrand’s 13th annual Best Global Brands report, which ranks brands by their value over key criteria.

While Coca-Cola retained its number one position, Apple jumped to second place with stellar sales in both developed and emerging markets. IBM is ranked third. 

Social media giant, Facebook (69), enters the report after making headlines as the third largest IPO in US history, and Google (4) experienced a 26% increase in brand value over the last year, exceeding rival Microsoft’s (5) brand value for the first time in the history of Interbrand’s report. 

Interbrand, a leading brand consultancy, publishes its Best Global Brands report of the world’s 100 most valuable brands on an annual basis. Interbrand’s methodology – the first of its kind to be ISO certified – analyses the many ways a brand touches and benefits an organisation, from driving bottom-line business results to delivering on customer expectations.

To develop its report, Interbrand examines three key aspects that contribute to a brand’s value: 

• The financial performance of the branded products or service

• The role the brand plays in influencing consumer choice

• The strength the brand has to command a premium price, or secure earnings for the company

Against the backdrop of continued global economic uncertainty, this year’s top 100 brands excelled in securing their market position and delivering more personal and enriching brand experiences to consumers, across geographies and platforms, said researchers.

“As global competition increases and many competitive advantages, like technology, become more short-lived, a brand’s contribution to shareholder value will only increase,” said Jez Frampton, Interbrand’s global chief executive officer.

“The world’s 100 most valuable brands are leading the way by listening to consumers, employees, and investors alike and delivering a seamless and holistic brand experience across an ever-evolving range of consumer touchpoints.”

In a fast-moving world where consumers’ offline and online brand experiences constantly intertwine, the leading brands across industries are staying actively engaged, tapping into the inexorable rise of data and information in order to drive innovation, reports Interbrand. They are spending the time and money required to understand the role their brand plays in consumers’ lives – and they are strategically weaving their brand proposition into every interaction.

2012 new entrants: Pampers, Facebook, Prada, Kia, Ralph Lauren, MasterCard

Pampers (34): Pampers, the top-selling nappy brand in the UK and P&G’s number one selling brand in the world, earned the highest ranking position among this year’s new entrants. Pampers has effectively used social media platforms and loyalty programmes to connect to its consumer base. Such efforts (and increased financial transparency on P&G’s part) have earned Pampers a high-ranking spot in this year’s Best Global Brands report.

Facebook (69): Facebook’s IPO in May enabled Interbrand to examine the social media behemoth’s financials for the first time. Despite its rocky start as a publicly listed stock and lingering uncertainty about its business model, Facebook’s growth as a brand, especially in emerging markets, secures it a place in this year’s report.

Prada (84): Prada returns to the Best Global Brands report this year. The brand’s continued growth in revenues is fueled largely by 250+ DOS (Directly Operated Stores) worldwide – a network which has expanded with a careful eye on increasingly sophisticated customers in emerging markets.

Kia (87): For the past few years, Kia has been one of the fastest-growing global automotive brands. In the US, Kia’s market share has grown for 17 consecutive years and its sales numbers continue to rise, even in the troubled European marketplace. 

Ralph Lauren (91): Making its first appearance in the top 100 since 2009, Ralph Lauren’s notable brand growth in the past year can be attributed to highly innovative communication patterns and consistency across all touchpoints and formats.

MasterCard (94): MasterCard makes its debut in the 2012 Best Global Brands report after an impressive year. The company’s launch of its “Priceless Cities” campaign and a growing suite of solutions for business owners are steadily increasing consumer satisfaction – contributing to its rise in brand value.

2012 top rising brands: Apple, Amazon, Samsung, Nissan, Oracle

Apple (+129%): Despite Steve Jobs’ passing, consumers’ emotional connection to the Apple brand remains stronger than ever. (This was made clear just recently with the launch of iPhone 5.) So far this year, the company has generated a net profit of USD $8.8bn and its brand value has increased 129%. In the face of increasing competition from rivals Google and Samsung, the company has demonstrated its commitment to protecting the Apple brand and its intellectual property.

Amazon (+46%): Amazon has introduced the Kindle Touch and Kindle Fire in 175 countries, stretching the Kindle empire beyond its e-reader origins and into a serious rival to the iPad. The Kindle Fire now enjoys the world’s second-largest tablet market share.

Samsung (+40%): With 19.1% market share, Samsung became the global leader for smartphone shipments in 2011 ahead of Apple and Nokia. Samsung also generated a great deal of online buzz by integrating its Galaxy SIII and Note into the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics. Despite its legal battle with Apple, Samsung’s brand value increased by a meteoric 40% this past year.

Nissan (+30%): Nissan recovered quickly from last year’s natural disasters in Japan and grew its market share — credit its ability to push the envelope on innovation and create bold vehicle designs like that of the Nissan Juke. Nissan’s ability to overcome challenges and continually innovate caught the attention of consumers and helped its brand value to increase by 30%.

Oracle (+28%): Oracle has been branching out beyond database solutions in order to stay ahead of competitors. The company continues to make strategic acquisitions and grow its capabilities and offerings, especially in cloud computing. Oracle’s 28% increase in brand value this year proves that such strategies have impressed customers and investors alike.

2012 exits 

Notable exits this year include several financial service brands; Barclays, UBS and Zurich. HTC, Nivea and Armani have also dropped out of the list.

FMCG/CPG brands increase in brand value and expand product offerings 

The rise in value of several FMCG/CPG brands – Kellogg’s, Heinz, Colgate, Johnson & Johnson, L’Oréal, Danone and Nestlé – reflect successful growth in the emerging markets, said Interbrand. 

Another growing trend observed this year was the increasing number of FMCG brands expanding into the healthcare space. Kellogg’s (29), Heinz (46), Colgate (47), and Johnson & Johnson (79) all rose in brand value from 2011. Avon (71) and Kleenex (80) were the only two brands to lose brand value (-4% and -7% respectively).

Interbrand’s 2012 Best Global Brands report, including detailed sector analyses, is available in full on interbrand.com and bestglobalbrands.com.