BestGlobalBrands2012The definitive guide tothe 100 Best Global Brands
Table of ContentsThe Future is Human     The Future of Brand    2                   Building                            22...
The Future is Human      By Jez FramptonIf 2011 was about upheaval and uncertainty, 2012 has been abouttransition. Last ye...
fantasies, and dreams. They have the power to touch and change usprecisely because they are human creations, invented in r...
Playing to Win on the Digital Frontier           By Simon Smith and Erica Velis    Digital is advertising’s new ecosystem,...
era. The price of entry is low, the growth is         skepticism over its business model, but also      operates under a d...
Brand Humanity of Olympic Proportions        By Lizzy StallardEvery four years the Olympic Games                     human...
research showed that the brand’s efforts                 from Visa in its 25-year history as an Olympicaligned well with Ol...
The World’s Toughest Brands: Service brands are some            of the hardest to build. Yet greatness is still possible. ...
in when the problems became too difficult       Unrelentingly relevant                                                      ...
Citizens All: The New Rules of Corporate Citizenship       By Tom Zara and Peter CenedellaThe markets in which brands oper...
these increasingly transparent times: develop          high tech that blurs the traditional work/life     and — crucial fo...
physical spaces and places, internal culture        intelligence) could create a whole new world of       The Future of Br...
01Best          Coca-ColaGlobal              + 8%              77,839 $mBrands2012              Coca-Cola. A name that is ...
ADJUSTED FOR LOOKS02                                                                                                      ...
05                                                                                                            07Microsoft ...
09                                                                                                               11Samsung...
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Best Global Brands 2012

  1. 1. BestGlobalBrands2012The definitive guide tothe 100 Best Global Brands
  2. 2. Table of ContentsThe Future is Human The Future of Brand 2 Building 22Playing to Win on theDigital Frontier Best Global Brands 2012 6 24Brand Humanity of Sector OverviewsOlympic Proportions 72 10 Criteria, Methodology,The World’s and Brand StrengthToughest Brands 134 14 ContributorsCitizens All: The New 142Rules of CorporateCitizenship 18
  3. 3. The Future is Human By Jez FramptonIf 2011 was about upheaval and uncertainty, 2012 has been abouttransition. Last year, dissent was in the air as protestors took tothe streets from Tahrir Square to New York City, a nuclear crisisin Fukushima reignited a worldwide energy debate, and ongoingissues in the banking industry have brought — and continue tobring — deficiencies to the fore. Like it or not, we are entering anew world. Connected, networked, hyper-aware, and fraught withcontradictions, this new world is complex and confusing, but rich,intimate, and alive. It is, for brands, full of promise and bound-less possibility — if organizations can learn how to tap into thisvast intelligence. The inexorable rise of digital consumers, furtheraccelerated by the mobile and tablet revolution, is radically shift-ing the dynamics of the marketplace. Facebook, which has foreveraltered the way we communicate and relate, went public this year.The London Olympics was not only the greenest Olympic eventever staged, but the most digital to date. Welcome to the future.Information has leveled the playing field, but has also compli-cated it. Though data — and lots of it — is available to all, thatdoesn’t mean everyone understands which bits of informationare important or how they can be strategically applied. Today’scustomers are skeptical, vocal, savvy — and have everyone compet-ing for their attention. Any brand that becomes fixated only onthe data, and forgets that those numbers are really people, willbe punished swiftly. Big data facilitates personalization, not areturn to broadcast. Only brands that stay transparent, activelyengaged, and true to their promises will manage to capture heartsand minds, earn trust and loyalty, and command a premium.Today’s best brands are in touch with their own humanity andthe humanity of others. They listen to consumers, employees,and investors alike and respond to the messages they receive.They want to know how people really feel about their com-pany, they gather input and use it to drive innovation, andthey realize that there is a lot to be learned from the wisdomof crowds. The challenge for brands is to respond quickly andwith sincerity, or they risk compromising the relationship.After all, brands evoke emotion. They are personal. They fulfill anddelight us. They are reliable, familiar, exciting, surprising, andever in the fabric of our lives. They are woven into our memories, Best Global Brands 2012 / The Future is Human
  4. 4. fantasies, and dreams. They have the power to touch and change usprecisely because they are human creations, invented in response toboth our deepest and most practical needs.The principles that build and maintain strong brands still hold true,but sometimes we forget that people are really at the center of it all.Resonant symbols, cultural images, emotional attractors, behaviordefiners — brands are all this and more. They are living businessassets: a concept, a feeling, a differentiating promise that grows,evolves, and will never die as long as a brand is kept alive in theminds of people. In order to succeed, brand owners must becomemore sensitive to the needs and desires of informed and discerningcustomers who demand high degrees of engagement — and consis-tency. And increasingly, the capacity of brands to deepen existingrelationships and develop new ones relies on their ability to leveragenew technology in service of the human connection.Those who manage the Best Global Brands 2012 understand the rolethey play in peoples’ lives, and respond accordingly — building onsuccesses and making up for mistakes. They are constantly nurturingtheir brands to keep pace in a rapidly changing world; they know thatevery market is different, every interaction counts, and every indi-vidual matters. Quite an achievement in such turbulent times. Thesestrong, highly innovative brands have earned the loyalty of manyindividuals who, collectively, contribute to their power and prosperity.They have also earned our respect and admiration, along with a placein our report. Jez Frampton Global Chief Executive Interbrand 4
  5. 5. Playing to Win on the Digital Frontier By Simon Smith and Erica Velis Digital is advertising’s new ecosystem, a USD billion company, beset with problems, dicey frontier for most major businesses, and the stock continues to fall. With the IPO a new medium for conversation, and a a distant memory and the stock value roughly technological wonder that has connected halved, the Facebook brand has taken a hit the world. It’s also among the most misun- and the effects on the market, the sector, and derstood phenomena in business today. the company itself, are likely to last a while. We are only just beginning to discover its potential to enhance business and, so far, Another digital company that has fallen investing in digital companies has proven far short of expectations is Zynga. Using to be a gamble. With a billion users on Facebook as a platform, Zynga is best known Facebook and 500 million on Twitter, for interactive games like FarmVille and there is no doubt that social media is CityVille, and has grown rapidly since it flourishing. A huge captive audience, and emerged on the social network scene. Games the promise of transforming “likes” into and apps have exploded in popularity in sales, has piqued the interest of investors the past few years, an outgrowth of social and companies who want to build their media and the transition to mobile devices. brands and turn key groups of people Cheap to produce but often lucrative, Zynga into paying customers. However, several has successfully capitalized on this trend. companies that appeared to be paving However, since the company’s December IPO, the way to the profitable new digital age its shares have dropped 70%; investors worry have faltered, shaking the confidence of about the long-term viability of its business investors and resurrecting the ghost of model, its dependence on Facebook, and its the dot-com bust of 2000. ability to keep making money from the people who play its digital games. Heralded with hype, Facebook, Zynga, and Groupon were all heavily promoted and And then there’s Groupon. Relying heavily on seemed poised to deliver. Facebook’s IPO on marketing to acquire new customers, Groupon May 18, 2012 was a milestone in Silicon Valley turns a profit by offering consumers deals and internet business history. On the morn- on local goods and services, and splitting ing of the 18th, the media clamor reached fever the discount proceeds with the participat- pitch: The Street predicted the stock could rise ing merchant. Though questions later arose to $60, $70, even $80 USD; trading broke stock about Groupon’s business model, namely the volume records, and the market saw the stock relationship between marketing spend and peak at $45 USD. That left the company with a its growth rate, Groupon CEO Andrew Mason higher market capitalization ($104 billion USD) initially assured investors of his business’ than all but a few of the largest US corpora- enormous profit potential. However, with an tions. For the moment a winner, CEO Mark inability to compete with larger discounters Zuckerberg’s personal stock was valued at like Amazon, the company has shifted from $19 billion USD. A few days later, Mark even hypergrowth to stagnation, which has left its married his girlfriend of nine years — and let stock at a fraction of its recent worth. the world know by updating his relationship status. It was a perfect Hollywood ending. Is this the beginning of the end for social media, FarmVille-esque games, and internet Unfortunately, cracks appeared and the stock daily deals? Haven’t we all heard and seen it kept sliding. The share price dropped over 30% before with once-hot internet companies like in the first 20 days. Regulators are now inves- Netscape, Napster, LimeWire, MySpace, or tigating the IPO, and more than 40 lawsuits Friendster? They all dominated the market at have been filed. A $100 billion USD company one time, then quickly got trumped. It could just prior to its debut, Facebook is now a $65 be that this is just the nature of the digital6 Best Global Brands 2012 / Playing to Win on the Digital Frontier
  6. 6. era. The price of entry is low, the growth is skepticism over its business model, but also operates under a different paradigm and If the fundamental need to be connected toquick, and the fall to near-oblivion is swift owing to the fact that there are more stocks reacts to the daily ups and downs, which friends, get daily deals, and play silly gamesand hard. Or, could it be, at least in the case out there, which is hurting the stock price and only makes it harder for young companies online is still in place, there is hope for Face-of Facebook, that we have a true digital mega- spooking investors. to regain their luster once Wall Street’s book, Groupon, and Zynga, no matter whatcompany that will survive the growing pains, attitude toward them sours. things look like now. The pressure to pleasefind its balance, mature as a brand, and When it comes to Facebook, many are investors will always be there, but whetherbecome a leader of the digital frontier? wondering if its CEO has the chops and matu- Wall Street’s minute-by-minute changing of or not a company survives really depends on rity to grow the social media giant beyond position is out of step with Silicon Valley’s how well it pleases the people who use theirWhat all three of these companies have display ads and master the mobile segment. approach to moneymaking. Wall Street wants products or services. When we at Interbrandin common is no guarantee of long-term Lured by the size of Facebook’s user base, instant results and Silicon Valley takes a say brands have the power to change thegrowth and a business model that relies on which has allowed Facebook Inc. to build longer-term view. Technological innovation world, we mean that they have the power to“unproven” sources of revenue. Furthermore, a $3 billion-a-year USD advertising busi- takes time to develop and some attempts change people’s lives — making life easier,they all went public at too high a value, ness, ad spending has increased. However, fail — that’s part of the process. In Silicon more meaningful, more enjoyable, morepropped up by late-stage money — part of a because of that, companies are becoming Valley, where some of the brightest have convenient and productive. When a brandrecent Silicon Valley trend in which promi- more interested in measuring the results of had multiple start-ups and risen from fail- delivers that, consistently — people love themnent investors jump into young companies social media advertisements, which can be ure — it’s the price of success. On Wall Street, for it — and everyone, including investors,just before their IPOs. Unprepared for the hard to quantify. There are also concerns that failure is not an option. gets exactly what they hoped for.scrutiny and expectations of Wall Street, Facebook’s advertising methods are untestedissues with the “fundamentals” of all of these or unproven. For brands, social media is a In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Dan Rose, If anything, we need a reality check. Notcompanies came to light as soon as the first key part of marketing, a way to build brand Facebook’s Vice President of Partnerships, is everyone is running away from Facebook’searnings reports were released. Challenged awareness. But for investors, the question said to have put the company’s situation in stock. Investors are not overlooking traditionalby the transition to mobile, as well as the is: How does all of this translate directly perspective at a company meeting in early metrics. Silicon Valley is still rich with invest-fact that their main sources of revenue are into revenue? August. In an attempt to assuage employees ment opportunities. And some people aredependent on something that doesn’t feel who were worried about the stock price, he making a lot of money right now, even asdurable and concrete (“likes” on Facebook), Under similar pressure are Groupon and shared a story from his time at Amazon. The Facebook, Groupon, and some other recentit will be hard for such companies to secure Zynga. Both companies are losing customers. company stock had tanked and, as a father internet IPOs continue to struggle. Thethe confidence of investors. Zynga, for instance, expected to make just with two young children, Rose became espe- internet, today, is no longer a novelty. In fact, half of what it hoped this year; the company cially concerned about his ability to provide the number of people connected to the Web develops games that have little depth, and for his family. Facing a tough decision with is mind-boggling. So, despite the foreboding Clash of the titans: while people may become obsessed in the no obvious answer, he asked himself, “Do comparisons, 2012 is vastly different from the Silicon Valley vs. Wall Street short-term, the novelty soon wears off and we have the right people in place and is our dot-com era. There is no reason to lose faith.Clearly, Wall Street wants to see results — as they move on. Also, more gamers want to mission worthwhile?” He believed the answer We’re simply in transition.in swift growth in revenue. Silicon Valley play on the go, and Zynga’s mobile games was yes; rode the situation out, and is,venture capitalists, however, are focused on aren’t big hits as of yet. To make matters presumably, better off for it. He asked himselfthe long term. They take the ups and downs worse, the brand spends disproportionately the same question about Facebook and isof the stock market with a grain of salt and on R&D and SG&A (selling, general, and convinced the answer is yes. In the end, itdetermine the value of an investment based admin), all of which use up much of what is our collective confidence in a companyon what it might be worth in a few years, not profit the company does make, leaving little that keeps it going — which is why brandnext quarter. They expect volatility after a for shareholders. management, essentially the managementcompany goes public and believe, especially of perception, is so incredibly important.in the case of Facebook, that the downward One of the difficulties with investing in techslide in public valuations, while it may have companies is the sheer pace of their develop- Is the bubble about to burst?an effect on private valuations, will ultimately ment. Because they grow so quickly, the — Simon Smith is Interbrand’sbe manageable. start-ups’ initial burst generates excitement, It’s true, there are parallels between now and Digital Director of Europe, the which makes investors want to cash in. But the dot-com days. Back then, the stock prices Middle East, Africa & Latin AmericaHowever, with Facebook and Groupon hitting these businesses can also reach saturation of internet companies soared to dizzying Erica Velis is the Content Editor fornew lows, concerns about these companies in their markets extremely fast. It’s hard heights and, as a result, those companies Interbrand’s Global Marketing &in terms of durability and their ability to to figure out when the growth might begin moved faster and with insufficient caution. Communications teamgrow their business are intensifying — not to slow down, as it inevitably will. Silicon Market confidence in these companies wasleast of all because of the lock-up expiration Valley, with its risk-taking, start-up culture, high, as was the promise of future profits.on many of the shares that were not on the is more accustomed to the volatility — even Many companies were grossly overvalued.open market during the IPO. Concerns are expects it — and is, therefore, willing to ride Today, things are different — we have theeven greater for Groupon, not only due to things out. Wall Street, on the other hand, benefit of hindsight. 8 Best Global Brands 2012 / Playing to Win on the Digital Frontier
  7. 7. Brand Humanity of Olympic Proportions By Lizzy StallardEvery four years the Olympic Games humanity — and did so with positive impact.provide not only the world’s greatest stage In fact, the notion of “brand humanity” wasfor athletes, but a tremendous oppor- the overriding theme at the Olympics, andtunity for brands to flex their muscles it’s a theme worth exploring. Global personalagainst their rivals too. When it comes to care giant, Proctor & Gamble, for instance,Olympic sponsorship deals, brands invest took brand humanity to new heightsan enormous amount of time, resources, with their “Thank You, Mom” campaign.and billions of dollars. In return in London Celebrating the role that mothers play inthis year, sponsoring brands gained access raising Olympians, the campaign taps intoto a global audience of 4.8 billion people. universal sentiment by honing in on the contribution that mothers make in raisingNow that the Games have ended, marketers successful, well-rounded children. Launchedare focused on the tangible benefits brands 100 days before the Opening Ceremony, P&G’sexperienced. What we should examine are biggest campaign in the 175-year history ofnot just immediate, measureable returns, the company was a huge success, with thebut also what we’ve gained and learned from supporting brand films garnering almost 15.5the Games in 2012 — and the implications for million views around the world. There’s notbrands going forward. a product brand in sight, yet its emotional power is unprecedented. The real success ofFirstly, it’s true to say that the idea of celebrat– this campaign, of course, is that, withouting the human spirit has permeated all aspects explicitly promoting itself, P&G has accom-of the Olympics. This touched London deeply plished what most marketing efforts fall farand radiated out to the rest of the world. The short of: inextricably linking the corporateperformance of sponsoring brands must be brand with universal human values likeseen in this unique context. A staggering 48% family cohesion, mutual love and support,of the population of London attended an and the dreams of greatness we all have forOlympic event, including many of us in Inter- ourselves and our loved ones. Proving thebrand’s London office — and the atmosphere power of this approach, Interbrand studiedwas indeed inspiring. The feeling of seeing consumer associations with this year’s spon-one’s nation win medals in real time is truly sors in the period leading up to the Games andincomparable. We were also moved by the found that P&G enjoyed the greatest increaseimmense generosity of spirit from the likes of in brand strength — specifically around valuesthe 70,000 “Games Makers,” the volunteers such as credibility and authenticity.who so generously gave their time at thegames. Amazingly, at the Closing Ceremony, In another example, the official oil and gasit was these ordinary people who received the sponsor, British Petroleum (BP), initiallygreatest cheers of support, perhaps more so kicked off its communications effort bythan the athletes themselves. The mood trans– focusing on its functional involvement in theformed in London, especially on the Under- Games, such as fueling the Olympic fleet.ground, where normally even the slightest eye Interestingly, BP promptly switched to ancontact is avoided. Yet, during the Olympics, emotional strategy just four weeks before thewe let down our guard. Strangers casually Opening Ceremony, when the brand launchedstruck up conversation around their plans for its “Here’s to the Home Team” campaign inthe day ahead — certainly a rarity until we the UK, spotlighting all those involved incaught the fever of 2012. Somehow, the super- the behind-the-scenes activity — from thehuman nature of the Olympic Games put us groundsmen and organizers to the athletesback in touch with our own humanity. and other sponsors. Through this campaign we once again witnessed a brand celebratingIt only seems fitting, given the atmo- the human engine that made the Gamessphere, that brands embraced this same a reality. Despite BP’s troubled past, our Best Global Brands 2012 / Brand Humanity of Olympic Proportions
  8. 8. research showed that the brand’s efforts from Visa in its 25-year history as an Olympicaligned well with Olympic values when com– sponsor. The “Go World” campaign was Visa’spared with other players, such as Dow and GE. most social ever and put customers firmly at the center, allowing them to cheer on theIn a similar vein, McDonald’s celebrated athletes through social channels. This is apeople with their “We All Make the Games” subtle shift from the Beijing Olympic Gamescampaign. Personal stories captured via in 2008 where the brand demonstrated itsguerilla film crews throughout the Park and support for the athletes. However, in 2012,the wider city center focused on the emotion Visa celebrated the athletes along with itsat the heart of the Olympics. The multichan- cardholders. The more inclusive strategynel campaign allowed spectators to upload seems to have paid off — to date, 59 millionphotos of themselves getting into the spirit “cheers” have been posted through socialof the Games — McDonald’s received 20,000 channels, and the Go World YouTube channelsubmissions leading up to the Opening has received 47 million views. In hindsight,Ceremony. McDonald’s is also making heroes the level of engagement Visa achievedof ordinary people across other touchpoints, throughout the Olympics is impressive givenincluding in-restaurant. If you’ve walked past the significantly high negative sentimenta McDonald’s recently, you’ll have noticed surrounding the brand at the start of thetheir mosaic window displays, capturing Games. According to our Brand Playback™portrait photographs of the real people that tool, which assessed online sentiment,make the brand — from suppliers to employees the exclusivity rights around Visa use wereto customers. By capturing, replaying and the main contributor to the dissatisfactiondisplaying the moments and emotional many consumers felt.responses that make the Olympics so movingand special, McDonald’s celebrated human- Those of us from Interbrand’s London officeity at its best. However, while the brand did, of course, see some brands continue toultimately succeeded in eliciting a positive push spine-tingling messaging that focusedresponse, the appropriateness of McDonald’s on the might of the athletes in action — suchrole as an Olympic sponsor has been ques- as the adidas “Take the Stage” campaign,tioned. Our research revealed that 25% of those as well as Omega’s “Start Me Up.” However,surveyed felt that the brand was a poor fit with when we think about the brands that actuallyOlympic values. The mixed opinions indicate cut through in 2012, the most successful werethat many consumers want and expect to see those that resonated with audiences at a farbetter alignment between the values of spon- deeper level, celebrating the human spirit,soring brands and notions associated with the not exceptional human powers.Olympics, like health and fitness. At this year’s Games, those brands that forgedEDF Energy also played into the human side, a connection with their customers did so withbut in a slightly different way. The brand humanity, acknowledging the participationcapitalized on conversations that undoubt- and accomplishments of everyday people — notedly occurred worldwide as people fantasized just Olympians. Brands that successfullyabout what it takes to become an Olympic fostered an environment to create customerathlete: “What would it be like?”; “What conversation took home the gold.if?”; “How long would it take me?”. In EDF’splayful UK campaign, two eager technicians A true celebration of the human spirit, it’s“test” the equipment ahead of the Opening no surprise that some are calling the 2012Ceremony, by taking to the hurdles in the Olympics “The People’s Games.” The success-stadium, swimming a length of the Olympic ful brands couldnt have better tapped intopool, and trying out various other Olympic that ethos.events. We’d all love to have a go, and thisclever, yet simple, piece taps into the desire — Lizzy Stallard is the Directoror intrigue that all of us non-Olympians have of New Business & Marketing,felt at one time or another during the Games. Interbrand LondonThis year also saw the greatest investment 12
  9. 9. The World’s Toughest Brands: Service brands are some of the hardest to build. Yet greatness is still possible. By Josh Feldmeth The Best Global Brands list rewards out- that join the firm, the greater the business comes. The more economic value you can growth. But leaders have strong personalities drive through your brand over time, the and independent minds. They don’t “do” higher the valuation. It’s “show me the homogeneity or naturally subvert their own money,” and the top 100 brands do just that. point of view in the interest of a shared vision. That’s the paradox: while brands But behind the list lies a secret. While all thrive on clarity and consistency, the thriving brands are judged by the same criteria, some business services company actively acquires brands have it harder than others. And assets (i.e., people) that, by their very nature, services brands may have it hardest of all. reject common thinking. These disadvantaged brands live in a category Great brands overcome the paradox and without tangible products. They have low subsequently scale the brand globally through advertising-to-revenue ratios. They often are a rigorous attention to culture. Accenture’s run by executives who lack marketing exper- culture was founded in St. Charles, Illinois, tise. The responsibility for building culture where every new college graduate hire spent and insuring consistent delivery is distributed the first weeks of their career learning to over sprawling organizations of hard-driving, code while being steeped in Accenture’s independent-minded talent. In the land of cultural DNA. IBM is another example. Its brand building, services businesses must much lauded “Smarter Planet” strategy thrive in rocky soil. has its roots in an internal engagement exercise: its 400,000 plus employees aligned So when a strong service brand emerges from to a single strategy that places them — “I’m an these hostile conditions, we take notice, IBMer” — in the center of the frame. because in their hard-wrought success lies the genetic code of the world’s toughest brands. Cognizant’s approach is to ground the culture in the founding energy of its leaders. “I joined One such success story is the business and Cognizant because of the passion of the lead- technology services company, Cognizant. ership,” explains Painter. “When I met with Since its founding in 1994, the company the management for the first time, I realized has been on a roll. With more than 140,000 it was a team that has been here since day employees and operations in 24 countries, it is one. They’ve experienced remarkable growth. one of the fastest-growing technology compa- Yet, the only thing they were talking about nies of all time. To help us unpack the story, was the next five years: how to grow, how to we interviewed Robert Painter, Cognizant VP expand the brand, how to serve clients better. of Corporate Marketing. His insight reveals They all had the same passion. ” how Cognizant is building a brand with deep roots, an unrelenting vision and a hard-edged The roots of every strong brand are anchored accountability — traits shared by the world’s in its culture. This is where Cognizant’s story toughest services brands. begins: with a passionate leadership team, galvanized around a shared vision for growth and committed to culture. It’s the same for Deep roots in authentic soil Accenture, IBM, and the other big services There is a conundrum in business services brands. It’s textbook stuff really, but for busi- branding: As the business grows, the brand ness services firms, particularly those that are weakens. We call it the Partner Paradox. The growing quickly globally, it’s a very rare and more partners (or senior talent in general) difficult thing.14 Best Global Brands 2012 / The World’s Toughest Brands
  10. 10. in when the problems became too difficult Unrelentingly relevant for the client’s management teams. WeEveryone’s on the bus, but is it headed in the presented to the C-suite. We had the factsright direction? This is a particularly tricky and all the confidence in the world.question in the world of technology. How doesthe brand ensure that its enduring vision will It’s not surprising, then, that thoseconsistently win in a constantly evolving sec– responsible for building brands within high-tor? Cognizant’s answer is simple: be relevant. performing services organizations often shy away from accountability. They often don’tAgain, Painter: “Branding in technology have the data they want, and the managementservices is one of the most challenging to which they report are experts in businessmarketing jobs that you can imagine. It all strategy and financial engineering. It can becomes down to a simple term: relevance. daunting. But where others may see a debili-We don’t wake up and say, ‘How do we make tating need for accountability, the world’sthe brand better?’ We say, ‘Are we being as toughest services brands see liberation.relevant to our clients as possible?’” Painter says, “I sometimes feel my job is onThe most relevant brand will always win. the easier side. I’m blessed with managementIt will be chosen more frequently, given a and a board that is clear about the strategicpremium, and recommended to others. direction, and how we are going to be rele-Yet in the world of technology, what is vant for our clients. As a marketing executive,relevant today may not be relevant tomorrow. this is a real luxury.”Cognizant’s response is a brand propositionthat doesn’t anchor on something that is Painter may feel his job has relative advan-relevant — smartest consultants, best price, tages, but he certainly hasn’t taken themost flexible, most global, etc. Rather, they easy path.aim simply to be the most relevant. He’s documented a brand journey, a step-It’s a positioning masterstroke. It’s simple, by-step road map for building the brandmemorable, and animating for the organiza- between now and 2015. Each milestonetion. It’s guaranteed to drive revenue and can be measured quantitatively. And whileprofit. And it demands the best from the other brands have similar road maps, what’sculture: vigilance to client needs, flexibility, unique about the Cognizant brand team isopen-mindedness and restlessness for future their insistence on being held accountable bywork. This is strategy in action; a living brand the organization.positioning that exists in the client experience,not in the brand strategy presentation. Painter finds this accountability liberating. “These aren’t metrics we keep within corpo-SAP is the classic example of the case. Since rate marketing. We go to great lengths to2000, the brand has been anchored to the share our goals and performance againstpurpose of “turning businesses into best-run them with the management team and thebusinesses.” For a company selling software, board. Quantitative measures are the key. Itnothing could be more relevant. And they makes the conversation with the CFO easierhaven’t wavered, continuing to build around with quarterly return on investment. Wea core proposition year after year. In an have nowhere to hide, which I findindustry where “what’s hot” changes by the very reassuring.”hour, these brands are unrelentingly focusedon what will be relevant for clients, forever. — Josh Feldmeth is Chief Executive Officer, Interbrand New York The freedom of accountabilityI used to work for a large managementconsultancy, and I loved it. We were called 16
  11. 11. Citizens All: The New Rules of Corporate Citizenship By Tom Zara and Peter CenedellaThe markets in which brands operate are through 2009, however, BP held down respect-increasingly transparent and fast-moving, able spots in the ranking as its brand strengthwith greater public visibility into corporate grew in large part on the increasing credibilitypractices and robust platforms for public of the company’s “Beyond Petroleum” claimsreaction. The relationship between compa- to green, which had helped them make deepnies and their target audiences is less and and highly visible inroads into Americanless one of broadcast and image control, markets. Its continuing, lengthy, and decisiveand increasingly about engagement and fall from brand grace should not merely beparticipation. “The wisdom of the crowd” seen as an inevitable by-product of the spill. Itis applied to everything from such brand stems much more from the ethos and valuesstaples as naming and logo design to of the BP culture, and its failure to performbusiness basics like product development. under the disaster’s scrutiny. The bottom lineClay Shirky aptly titled his influential 2008 for BP was that it was seen as dissembling,tome on the digital revolution Here Comes deflecting blame, and deceiving; it delayed andEverybody. Just four years later, it’s safe deferred taking responsibility, and it allowedto say that when it comes to the life of others to drive the story. BP’s response in thecorporate brands, everybody is, by now, media — including social media — stands asvery much here. a case study in how a PR disaster can quickly turn into a lasting brand disaster.And everybody isn’t just passively watching,of course. Consumers are expecting to see So what’s a brand to do in the interest of build-not just great products and services from the ing customer relationships and earning thebrands they choose; they also want to feel respect, trust — and love — of its audiences?that the brands they love are, in fact, worthyof that love. Brands are strong presences in Contrast BP with Nike (#26 in our report).our lives, deeply ingrained and abiding parts Once a poster child for sweatshops and aof our emotional, mental, and physical expe- target of international labor and human rightsrience and environment. So while the new activists, Nike has completely averted brandinteractive dynamic between brands and disaster and is enjoying its sixth consecu-consumers is inherently filled with perils for tive year on Corporate Responsibility magazine’sbrands, it is also replete with unprecedented annual ranking of the best corporate citizens,opportunities to fulfill people’s desires — and receiving high marks for its transparency, itseven create some in the process. environmental policies, and — most impor- tantly — its human rights performance. InThis is why Corporate Citizenship is at the the decade since Nike became, fairly or not,forefront of the life of brands as never before. a symbol of all that is wrong with globalHow brands negotiate this razor’s edge of risk outsourcing, one is more likely to see anand reward in the new crowd-driven, digital, activist wearing Nikes than bashing them.everything-at-once world will determine their Why the turnaround?strength, health, and wealth. Nike did two things: It simply owned its behavior, and then it got to work changing A tale of two brands it for the better.Case in point: British Petroleum (BP) is notamong Interbrand’s Best Global Brands 2012. This tale of two brands — one an annual fixtureNo surprise there; this marks BP’s third in our survey, the other still reeling from itsstraight year in brand rehab following the 2010 mishandling of a bad situation — is instruc-Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster in the Gulf tive of the new role of corporate citizenship.of Mexico. The three prior years, from 2007 Today’s corporations face a stark choice in Best Global Brands 2012 / Citizens All
  12. 12. these increasingly transparent times: develop high tech that blurs the traditional work/life and — crucial for countering the PR effect — From the C-suite down, Western Union evolvedand implement strategies to carve out a mean- balance. They therefore feel entitled to demand the authenticity of corporate claims of its traditional philanthropic efforts to aligningful presence as a corporate citizen in an that companies reflect their own values. To environmentalism. its foundation’s focus with the company’sengaged world, or run the risk of seeing your recruit the best of this generation, firms are core business. Not without risk to the sharebrand value erode and your business suffer. finding they must be responsive to Millennials’ A negative gap occurs when a brand fails to get price, the company’s CEO committed to theBillions of dollars of brand value are tied to desire to work for those companies that not credit in perception for its performance. These approach, culminating in an address on behalfvarious forms of corporate social responsi- only produce a better widget, but also do brands are not seeing the full return on their of immigrant concerns to the United Nationsbility — Coca-Cola, IBM and Microsoft alone something more positive for the world. Corporate Citizenship investment. That’s why General Assembly. No half measures there.routinely have close to USD $4 billion engaged it’s critical that companies find ways to tell With a footprint in 200 countries and whatin social programming among them. Metrically speaking, Corporate Citizenship, in the story of who they are, why they choose to Chavez D’Angelo calls “some understanding our view, can be ranked as a measurement of engage as they do, and how they are having an of marketing and an understanding of workingInterbrand has focused on advising our clients how a company interacts strategically with six impact in doing so. with various cultures, Western Union ”how to ensure that their citizenship dollars are critical constituents that depend upon it, and has aligned its business-side policies and itswell spent. And the short answer is: It’s about upon which it is dependent: its employees, its A positive gap occurs when a brand receives too foundation’s efforts.more than the spend. It’s about the credibility customers, its suppliers, the government(s) much credit for its performance. These brandsof a company’s culture of citizenship. responsible for both regulating and assisting run the risk of losing the valuable credibility The trends will only accelerate in the years it, the communities in which it does business, they have gained with consumers. It’s critical ahead: to interactivity, to consumer participa- and the larger environment it shares with the that the story a brand tells across platforms tion, to instantaneous reaction, and real-time The changing face of whole planet. about its social engagement is not a PR job or multi-platform dialogue between brands and corporate citizenship a brandwash. The story needs to show in every their audiences. Companies seeking a marketCorporate citizenship goes deeper and is In both our research and our client work, we facet of its narrative that engagement is rooted edge need to compete not only in the arena offundamentally different than older notions of have found that, first, consumer perception in the brand’s business, its sense of purpose as products and services, but also in the widercorporate social responsibility (CSR). CSR tradi- of a brand’s performance in any one of these an organization; rather than an add-on, world. Your social engagement could be a keytionally implied a separate body nominally six dimensions has a positive impact — a corporate citizenship efforts need to check determinant of where you rank in the comingwithin, but functioning apart from, the core halo effect, if you will — on the other five the box of authenticity. editions of the Best Global Brands.organization, such as a foundation, that took dimensions. This is good news: it givesaction in the social arena and may have borne companies license to laser-focus on an aspect This is a net positive, because it frees brands tolittle discernible relation to the company’s of social engagement that suits their brand pursue social engagement in ways that boostlarger sense of itself and its reasons for being in identity, and they can expect to see returns in the bottom line by aligning so clearly withbusiness. CSR too often smacked of doing the perception as a result. Second, we have seen their business mission and values.right thing out of duty, reducing risk of non- that the ROI on this approach is real, and tendscompliance, sundered from the bottom line, to trend higher long-term than the ROI on the One of the best current exemplars of thisseparate from the profit motive, unrelated to more traditional CSR approach. approach is Western Union and its “Ouran organization’s fundamental raison d’etre. World Our Family” program, which helpsIf doing good for the sake of a PR bump or to immigrants and their families worldwide. Closing the gapkeep the regulator at bay was the hallmark of Much of the company’s profits come from — Tom Zara is Executive DirectorCSR in recent times, then the new opportunity There’s a potential sinkhole in the market, its money transfer payments business, and of Strategy, Interbrand New York &for companies may be summed up in a simple waiting to suck value away from brands. It’s much of that business consists of immigrants Global Practice Leader ofequation: Doing good by doing what you the gap that can open up between a company’s in the US, many of them from Latin America, Corporate Citizenshipdo best yields greater value. Great corporate actual corporate citizenship performance on wiring money home to assist family members Peter Cenedella is Creative Copycitizens leverage their expertise in the market- the one hand, and the public perception of in need. As Luella Chavez D’Angelo, Western Director, Interbrand New Yorkplace to solve the world’s challenges while that citizenship, on the other. Union’s Senior Vice President for Globalgaining credibility and driving consumers to Corporate Responsibility, puts it: “We takechoose them over the competition. This year Interbrand, in partnership with this audience and consumer base very seri- Deloitte, measured the Best Global Green ously. We know we have a responsibility notCorporate citizenship, then, is the perception Brands — in part by assessing the gap — posi- only to watch after their cash as a leader inpeople have of a company’s positive contribu- tive or negative. To gauge performance we global payment services, but we’re movingtion to society, which is a key component of measured six elements of sustainability: that money for very important, impactfulthat company’s standing in the market and governance, operations, transportation and reasons: to get food on the table, to buy schoolits brand value. Such perception also has logistics, stakeholder engagement, supply supplies, to pay the bill that maybe is mucha tremendous impact on the HR function, chain, and products and services. For percep- harder for them than for you and I to pay.”hiring, and retention. Millennials, for exam- tion, we examined differentiation, presence,ple, have come of working age with a level of relevance, consistency, understanding, 20 Best Global Brands 2012 / Citizens All
  13. 13. physical spaces and places, internal culture intelligence) could create a whole new world of The Future of Brand Building and communications. Companies like Apple marketing for us to explore, where my digital By Jez Frampton have already set customer expectations and it me would browse for me, bring things for me doesn’t matter if you are a bank, a business to see, explore social opportunities, and saveThe last five years have been marked by B2C toward B&B and B&C. This presents consultancy, a retailer, or a hotel chain, the me from ever having to go and buy socks again.economic crises, sending businesses running new possibilities for brand building via message is simple: Join up!for cover and searching for answers. The innovation, interactive experiences, and This may well still be a leap, but the cost/immediate response for many was to attack communication inside and out. Whilst the solution may seem simple, sadly, benefits are worth considering. Consumerthe “supply-side”: trim the supply chain, the barriers frequently come from within: silo trends point to greater reliance on the Web,seek internal efficiency, and attack costs. But The rise of social truly changes communi- mentalities and politics. The opportunity is to and we all have busy lives nowadays! Whythe brutal truth is that in recessionary times cations — more dynamic, and one-on-one deliver seamless experiences across the silos, not delegate a little (or a lot) to a digital self?competition becomes even more intense, and customer interactions are becoming possible combined with creative curation to ensure The technology is already in existence andthis strategy has diminishing returns. Five by combining “big data” with key develop- high quality and innovative expression. The the possibilities for marketing are endless.years in, the mantra is shifting towards the ments in artificial intelligence (AI). This role of digital experiences within this holisticdemand side of the equation. accelerates the dynamic nature of adver- world cannot be underestimated, and it seems Certainly all of the above trends and conjec- tising on the Web; conversations are now clear that the potential of digital to augment, tures point to incredible opportunities forDriven by ever more demanding customers, “managed” via a combination of AI and extend, and create whole new interactions will those building brands, through communica-pushed by emerging market competitors, and human inputs. continue to shape companies. tions or otherwise. They also pose significantinspired by companies like Apple, many busi- threats: can brand owners change their struc-nesses are re-discovering the power of cre- But do all these conversations mean the end The primary role for digital is to act as the tures and behavior towards faster, flexible,ativity and design, increasing investment in of image building? Recently, a high profile glue, both joining together the many frag- more holistic ways of working, reducing silosinnovation, and trying to better understand tech CMO asked me if we needed brand posi- mented elements of an experience chain, and increasing innovation? Can agencies andhow brands drive their business. In short, we tioning in a world where opinion shifted from and providing a basis for on-going commu- consultancies adapt their skills to personal-are entering a new age of demand; no longer minute to minute. My answer pointed to the nications and interactions with customers. ized, dynamic demand management, with aabout latent, passive consumption, but about importance of context. Every message from Despite the fact that digital should become heavy emphasis on digital, crowdsourcing,dynamic, connected, and active markets that a brand is viewed in the context of that brand: central to building relationships with and creative curation?drive competition and, ultimately, success. its market position, personality, values, customers, many businesses still treat it as a competitive stance, etc. In other words, it promotional or idea-generating tool, rather One thing is certain: within this complexGiven this, we believe brands will play an shapes the way we interpret the message, and than a means to enhance, augment or create world, the focus provided by a well-definedincreasingly important role. Over a decade in a world where our communication with new ways to interact. and executed brand will become ever moreago, The Financial Times classed brands as the brands is increasing exponentially, a clearly important as internal/external beacons ofultimate source of sustainable, competitive defined brand becomes even more important. direction, purpose, value-creations, and Digital permissionadvantage. This August, The Economist stated experience.that branded businesses enjoy margins double Seth Godin pioneered “Permission Market- Choice is changingthat of their counterparts, with greater levels ing, a shorthand for understanding the ”of loyalty. It’s clear that in this increasingly Recent papers published by McKinsey in the boundaries for brands in a world wherecompetitive world, well managed brands Harvard Business Review, and by Interbrand in customers are in control. We believe the nextdrive profits, so it’s logical to expect greater Fast Company, illustrate that the two key driv- step along this curve will be the notion ofdegrees of innovation, sophistication, ers of brand value, choice (role of brand) and digital permission: the granting of rights bycreativity, understanding, and, of course, loyalty (brand strength), are both significantly customers within the digital world.accountability to a forensic level of sensitivity. affected by the post-digital world. Purchase decisions are becoming more fluid, better Remarkably, Levi’s saw this coming a full informed, and dynamic. There is always some- 13 years ago. They created a fitting process The rise of the conversation one a “step ahead” of you, and easy access to involving a laser body-scan to create personal-One of the biggest challenges facing the other user experiences and long-term opinions ized jeans. The core idea, however gimmickymarketing world over the next 10 years will affects the assumptions of loyalty. Both of the execution, was groundbreaking: thatbe the increasing importance of the conversa- these trends provide significant opportunities one could have a truly digital self. My digitaltion. The Cluetrain Manifesto (Levine, Locke, for marketers, and brand experience holds the me: a perfect scan of my physical being fusedSearls & Weinberger, 2000) defined markets key to maximizing the opportunities. with attitudes, purchasing behavior, likes,as conversations between companies and dislikes, interests, even connected to my ever- — Jez Frampton is Interbrand’s Globalcustomers — a conversation that has since expanding social network. Chief Executive Officer Holistic — the new mantraexpanded between customers. We believe that great brands are “business These aggregated images (made possible byAt Interbrand, we see interactivity among strategy brought to life” delivering a seam- big data, superfast networks and artificialcustomers and business shifting B2B and less experience across product and service, 22 Best Global Brands 2012 / The Future of Brand Building
  14. 14. 01Best Coca-ColaGlobal + 8% 77,839 $mBrands2012 Coca-Cola. A name that is more universally association in the minds of billions. Through its recognized than any other in the world. That’s consistent presence at the Games, Coke, a the power of Coca-Cola’s brand. Some will say it’s sponsor since 1928, continues to build its brand the flavor, but for millions, it’s the way Coca-Cola strength, reach, and impact every time the makes them feel. A brand that’s always evolving, Olympic torch is lit. Coke’s brand promise of fun, freedom, and refreshment resonates nearly everywhere. The Yet, despite its enormous size, Coca-Cola has company excels at keeping the brand fresh while proven to be nimble, flexible, and innovative, maintaining a powerful sense of nostalgia that adapting to local markets and new eras without unites generations of Coke lovers and reinforces diminishing its legacy. The brand continues to consumers’ deep connections to the brand. Its embrace digital, expanding its impressive online edgy campaigns continue to push boundaries, presence and engaging with consumers via its and Coca-Cola reinforced its values through “Coca-Cola Music” promotion. Also progressing celebratory promotions relating to its 125th-year in the area of corporate citizenship, Coca-Cola anniversary (“Sharing Happiness”) and the gained accolades for its advanced water recovery London Olympics (“Move to the beat”). system this year and received high ratings for employee diversity and sound workplace policies Though Coca-Cola sold millions of beverages on for LGBT associates. In a bold collaborative move the Olympic grounds in London this year, the with musical artist will.i.am, Coca-Cola has also brand’s real returns have come from global launched the EKOCYCLE brand, a stand-alone viewership. According to a survey released in July initiative that encourages recycling and sustain- by Research Now, Coca-Cola scored over 90% in ability among consumers through lifestyle brand awareness among respondents from the products made in part from recycled material. US, Canada, UK, France, Germany and Australia. Coca-Cola may be 126 years old, but with more One of the few marketing platforms that are than 50 million fans on Facebook, 1.8 billion Coke relevant to a global audience, the Olympics have products consumed daily and 3,500 beverages in allowed Coca-Cola to solidify a powerful its diverse portfolio — Coke’s still got it. 24 Best Global Brands 2012
  15. 15. ADJUSTED FOR LOOKS02 03Apple $7.1b $29.0b IBM $7.9b $17.2b $7.4b $30.0b $30.+ 129% $3.7b + 8% $3.8b $4.0b $4.9b $5.1b76,568 $m 75,532 $m Audi BMW Ferrari Ford the US-based multinational technology IBM, Harley-Davidson Honda Hyundai made fromMercedes-Benz Kia natural materialsNissan that have set Porsche the Toyo company, has consistently ranked as one of the world record for PV solar-to-electric power top world’s most innovative, profitable, and sustain- conversion efficiency. Despite effective brand riser AUTOMOTIVE able brands — and it is still operating at full speed. performance in the past year, revenue in the IBM continues to reinvent itself to meet ever- second quarter of 2012 was weak, especially in changing marketplace needs, turning its attention business services. Consequently, investor concerns to emerging markets, big data analytics, and arose when profits goals were met via cost-cut-Few companies have captured our imagination, record highs across developed and emerging cloud computing. Smarter Planet, IBM’s ground- ting. However, it is expected that the brand willinspired such devotion, and revolutionized the markets and, not surprisingly, Apple enjoys this breaking business strategy, continues to drive new more than deliver in the third and fourth quarters,way we live quite like Apple. While we may year’s biggest increase in brand value — an product and service development, employee much as it did in the first quarter of 2012. Though $5.4b $4.0b $3.8b $11.2b $4.2b $4.0bassume it’s the products that define Apple, it’s astounding 129%. Increasingly associated with engagement, and corporate citizenship. It remains perceived as leading edge compared to its competi-really a certain kind of thinking, a certain set of the luxury sector, Apple now produces items that a textbook example of how to create, build, and tors, to stay ahead, IBM must make sure itvalues, and an unmistakable human touch that consumers feel they must own to fit in socially. A deliver a world-leading business-to-business continues to deliver big, thought-provokingpervades everything Apple does — which is why feat once pulled off by Nike, transforming the brand. This year, among other innovations, IBM innovations and maintains its rich legacy ofour connections to the brand transcend commerce. sneaker into a coveted object with a high price researchers developed Kia Facebook Mastercard low-cost photovoltaic cells Pampers Prada Ralph Lauren world-changing technological advancement. tag, Apple’s iPhone and iPad have achievedThe response to Steve Jobs’ death last year proved similar status. The Nike model — a golden age of NEW ADDITIONShow deeply millions connect with Apple on anemotional level. In a world where consumers are dominance, before relaxing into a complex market sector — may signal the future of Apple, if 04oftentimes overwhelmed with information, the it’s not careful. The market may move on if Googlerole a brand plays in people’s lives has become all Apple’s products cease being a differentiator of + 26%the more important to ensuring a business’ class, taste, or cool, but that doesn’t appear to be 69,726 $moverarching success. Nobody understood this happening any time soon. ADJUSTED FOR LOOKSbetter than Steve Jobs. He simplified the complex, While opinions are mixed on Google+ and Google’s competing mobile operating systems. Still, Googledemocratized technology that was once out of Despite the fact that he was terminally ill, Jobs other various innovations, overall, the search faces stiff competition from the likes of Applereach, and built a brand so powerful that it forever reportedly worked for more than a year on the giant has had a productive year. With minimal and Microsoft. Google+ has failed to muscle in $5b $11bchanged the way consumers think of brands. products he believed would safeguard the room for growth in search engine market share, on Facebook, and Google Buzz was closed. The company’s future. Not only was he overseeing Google continues to transform itself into a broader $4b $3b company also needs to build trust among consum- $4b $4bJobs recognized that a brand is so much more the development of the iCloud project and IT company. New products and services include ers following online privacy concerns, Oracle’sthan a logo. He instinctively knew that his masterminding updated versions of the iPod, the Project Glass augmented-reality head-mount- allegations of copyright infringement, and thecustomers needed to feel a certain way when they iPad, iPhone, and MacBooks, but Apple sources ed display, Google TV, as well as Google Drive, a EU’s antitrust lawsuits. Despite these challenges,picked up an Apple product, when they entered have divulged that he also ensured at least four cloud computing service, not to beMastercard Facebook Kia confused with Pampers Google’s revenue has soaredLauren Prada Ralph this year. Thean Apple store, or when they visited the Apple years worth of products were in the pipeline. its efforts to build a self-driving car. The company, promising Motorola Mobility acquisition and thewebsite. He knew that a strong brand should Additionally, the historic patent battle between known for making bold bets, acquired Motorola strength of new and improved products haveenvelop the entire business strategy and posi- Apple and Samsung has recently come to an end, NEW ADDITIONS Mobility, along with a slew of its patents, which fueled an impressive 26% increase in brand value,tively influence the entire employee base. He also with the verdict largely favoring Apple. A decision could help Android fight off companies with on top of a similar increase last year.recognized that a brand is what connects a that’s likely to ripple across the entire smart-business with the hearts and minds of consum- phone industry, the verdict has strengtheneders. Simply put, Steve Jobs understood that a Apple’s design identity and will presumably sendbrand is uniquely capable of humanizing a copycat competitors back to the drawing board to Top risers of 2012business — and that is precisely why so many of avoid a design infringement lawsuit. Apple Amazon Samsung Nissan Oracleus are Apple ambassadors today. 129% 46% 40% 30% 28% As Steve Jobs himself expressed when heSteve Jobs also understood the importance of a regrettably stepped down as Apple’s CEO, “Ismooth transfer of power, which is why Apple believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative 2012maintained its momentum throughout 2011. days are ahead of it.” And if the numbers, the 2011After launching the iPhone 4S and iPad 2, both legacy, the potency of the brand, and recent strokeswent on to crush even the most optimistic of fate are any indication — it may indeed be aexpectations. This year, earnings again reached long time before the bloom wears off this Apple. 26 Best Global Brands 2012 TOP RISERS OF 2012
  16. 16. 05 07Microsoft McDonald’s– 2% + 13%57,853 $m 40,062 $mStill one of the world’s most recognized technol- relationship with its current consumers and McDonald’s, the leading global foodservice employees, building energy saving and wasteogy brands, Microsoft has found itself in a attract new ones in the process, Microsoft has retailer, stands out because of its exceptional reduction into staff incentives. Demonstrating itsbit of a holding pattern in 2012, reporting been making inroads into the healthcare market, brand management, significant global presence, commitment to brand development, McDonald’ssoft growth compared to Google and Apple. serving 22 million users on Live@edu, and leadership in sustainable practices and admirable is repositioning itself to appeal to a broaderIn particular, there has been weak computer pushing Xbox (the number one selling game approach to consumer engagement. McDonald’s audience, particularly by redesigning its outletsdemand as consumers switch to tablets and console in the US). The software giant is also has more than 33,500 restaurants in 119 countries and making them more modern, comfortable,try out Windows 8, the newest version of the focusing on business users, an area where its and the Golden Arches continue to expand, most and upscale. The McCafé experience is anothercompany’s flagship operating system (OS). competitors tend to be weak. Additionally, notably in Asia. The company deftly manages example of McDonald’s flexibility and its effortsAttempting to combat Apple’s lead in the tablet Microsoft worked hard to insulate itself against its franchise model, delivering a remarkably to appeal to a broader group of customers. Onmarket, Microsoft has promised a revolutionary the economic slowdown while building key areas consistent customer experience while still the digital front, McDonald’s “Make Your OwnOS that represents the convergence of technolo- of its business, and, in August, the brand allowing for locally relevant menu and service Burger” campaign in Germany and thegies along with a consistent, bold cross-platform launched a refresh of its corporate identity. variations (such as home delivery in India and Netherlands used crowdsourcing to generate newlook and feel. The technology world has had Microsoft also pushed into the hardware market China). The company is also working to respond recipes and promotions. The campaign createdunprecedented access to the development of with its own Surface tablets and into the to critics by increasing the number of healthy significant digital buzz and positioned the brandWindows 8. Its success would catapult Microsoft competitive fray — the global market for con- menu options and effectively communicating its as a digital innovator, helping to further buildforward and revitalize the entire PC ecosystem. verged software/hardware ecosystems. This move sustainability efforts to both customers and the brand’s strength.In an effort to establish more of a human will likely define the brand’s future. 0806 IntelGE + 12%+ 2% 39,385 $m43,682 $m For Intel, the last year has been filled with change, technology of the future. From putting anAs was the case before the dot com bubble, the been squarely on asserting its global leadership big bets, and the continued quest to remain at the anthropologist in charge of the Interactionpromise of emergent technologies can sometimes role. GE Works appears to be working. Growth in forefront of the ceaseless computing revolution. and Experience Research group, to bringing infeel a bit vague. As the market swooned over its energy infrastructure business, a healthy The rise of the smartphone, and the shift from executives from Apple and the BBC to guidesocial networks, the mobile media revolution, outlook in industrials, and a revitalized GE “the era of computers to the era of computing,” their entry into smartphones, tablets and homeand the all-knowing cloud, GE pulled the ulti- Capital demonstrate that the company can follow has made it hard for the brand to stretch from entertainment, Intel is shifting from a technol-mate trump card. In 2012, the brand launched GE up on its big bets in green technology (ecomagi- the processors for PCs and servers for which it is ogy first mindset to one of user first. The resultsWorks, an integrated communications platform. nation), healthcare (healthymagination), and known, into a broader set of technology offer- are already rolling in. After years of talking aboutWith gripping imagery and stories of meaningful the industrial internet. GE also served as a ings. While marketing efforts like the Creators entering the smartphone space, Intel finallyhuman outcomes, the campaign reasserted the sponsor of the 2012 London Olympics. And as Project, staged in conjunction with Vice, and a cracked the market, launching Intel-poweredbrand as the world’s maker of “real” things — some of the “can’t-miss” tech brands start to look host of smaller, targeted marketing programs smartphones around the world. Even in its PCfrom job creation in the manufacturing sector to a little light, GE is reminding the world how are making the brand more accessible to the and server markets, Intel is changing its tune,advanced healthcare technologies, GE’s focus has imagination really works. next generation of consumers, the drive towards delivering a broader experience beyond just greater relevance isn’t just a marketing one. performance. Time will tell whether Intel can Intel’s response has been to push consumer remain ahead of the tide of change in computing, understanding into everything that it does — but if early success and internal changes are any hiring new leaders, and promoting from within indication, Intel will be a brand to look to for to help bring a more user-centric attitude to years to come. how it goes about defining and building the 28 Best Global Brands 2012
  17. 17. 09 11Samsung Mercedes-Benz+ 40% + 10%32,893 $m 30,097 $m There may be no other vehicle that exudes class than 125 years, Mercedes-Benz continues to and luxury quite like Mercedes-Benz. In the respond to a market that is quickly shifting minds of many people, it is still the brand that in favor of green technologies. Setting new says, “I’ve arrived.” Its long heritage of excellence efficiency benchmarks, Mercedes-Benz also in engineering, performance, styling, and safety boasts the most economical luxury class model was dramatically underscored in 2010 by the in the world: the E 300 BlueTEC HYBRID. resurrection of founder Gottlieb Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz’s commitment to innovation top riser guiding motto, “The Best or Nothing.” Laying the is also evident in the development of forward- groundwork for further growth, the striking looking technologies like its F125! concept car, campaign reached millions and gave sales a essentially a blueprint for the future of significant boost. Building on that success, this luxurious, emission-free vehicles. Additionally, year’s confident “A as in Attack” campaign is now Mercedes-Benz is increasingly leveraging itsSamsung is one of the biggest successes of 2012, Furthermore, Samsung’s sponsorship of the fanning the flames of desire for the new A-Class AMG brand to add driving-performance creden-marked by a meteoric 40% rise in brand value. London 2012 Olympic Games, and in particular lineup. Together, with the new B-Class and tials to the masterbrand. Constantly definingIn a market competing to create convergent the Torch Relay, has raised brand awareness, further model variants based on the same vehicle new milestones in terms of vehicle driveecosystems of internet-enabled household with 14 million people judged to have seen its architecture, the A-Class is expected to be an systems, safety, comfort, design, and sleekdevices, its smartphone sales have led the way to branded bus in the UK. Online buzz was also important driver in the Mercedes-Benz growth aesthetics, Mercedes-Benz continues to livea strong position over competitors. With 19.1% driven by prominent roles of the Galaxy SIII and strategy going forward. A pioneering brand that up to its promises of fascination, perfection,market share, Samsung became the global leader Note smartly integrated into the Opening has been shaping the future of mobility for more and responsibility.for smartphone shipments in 2011 ahead of Apple Ceremony. Looking to the year ahead, Samsungand Nokia. From this bumper position, the next continues to fulfill its corporate philosophy asyear holds promise of greater expansion. Samsunghas announced plans to sell its own Microsoft well as its vision — “Inspire the World, Create the Future” — through its aspirational branding 12Windows phone and a series of Windows 8 project and commitment to bringing “new and BMWcomputers, to sit alongside the new Galaxy SIII meaningful innovations” to the global market- + 18%and Note. This will help it further connect place. Despite setbacks around the recent patent 29,052 $mSamsung mobile devices with home devices, such trial with Apple, the company goes into 2013 withas TVs and washing machines, to create a a strong stance in the market and a determined Synonymous with class, performance and style, “Future Retail” program. The stores represent theconsistent user experience as the brand grows. vision to become one of the top five brands by 2020. BMW remains a leading premium brand in the first step toward a new generation of brand automobile industry and continues to appeal to a experiences. Never short on innovation, BMW is10 wide host of target groups around the world with also poised to introduce, the i series, which over 11 million Facebook fans, more than most promises to bring new excitement and attention other auto brands. The key success factors are to the electric vehicle market. Despite this stellarToyota+ 9% BMW’s handling characteristics, design, and performance, BMW, the best selling luxury car in30,280 $m innovative thrust of the brand. As the official the US in 2011, is locked in a battle with Mercedes- automotive partner of the London 2012 Summer Benz for the same honor in 2012. The muchThe resilience of the Toyota brand seems to have consumers. The brand has intensified its Olympics, BMW provided over 3,000 vehicles to anticipated addition of all wheel drive to theclosed the chapter on sudden acceleration and incentives push and reduced its fleet sales. This the games, successfully demonstrating its redesigned 3-series may prove to be the extra gearhelped the carmaker in reclaiming its global helps customers find a good deal while also mastery of global brand management and further that BMW needs to take the lead.leadership position. Toyota’s Prius customers holding the line on the resale value of their unifying its positioning worldwide. BMW iscontinue to deepen their connection to the Toyota vehicle. While relying on incentives will determined to set new benchmarks in theportfolio. At the same time, the Prius lineup is undermine the brand, overall spending remains dealership experience, opening brand stores increating an influx of new customers to the Toyota among the lowest in the industry. Europe London and Paris this year as part of BMW’sbrand. And thanks to the generous subsidies and continues to be a challenge for the brand, but,reduced taxes on cleaner cars, hybrids are a clear overall, management will be focused on evolvingdifferentiator for Toyota, so the Prius portfolio its messaging and communications whilecontinues to grow. In addition to showing solid reinventing a maturing brand with more stylishnumbers with repeat customers, Toyota is and better-looking vehicles.strengthening its appeal with younger 30 Best Global Brands 2012

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