There has been a long debate on what analysts and experts should consider when ranking brands. Do websites and organsations publish these rankings just for PR? Most people question whether these rankings make any sense. However, the truth is, it’s expected for valuations to differ from one researcher to another. This differentiation is a result of the methodology used and the perspective of the analyst conducting the research.
Although brand rankings differ based on who has done the valuation, there is unanimity when it comes to the top four brands in the world. All the rankings apply the same approach, which involves using a company’s income as the starting point.
But the earnings aren’t all that goes into determining the ‘value’ of a brand. These valuations can change, and the business strategies employed by each brand can affect the rankings. The four giants—Google, Microsoft, Apple, and Amazon—have been at the top for quite some time now.
What makes these companies stand out is not just their ability to offer unique products; their competence in execution is a significant factor. Here are the most recent rankings and factors affecting the brand positioning of these four brands.
4th Most Valuable Brand – Microsoft
Focusing on Consumer Benefits
This tech giant ranks as the fourth most valuable brand in the world. The appointment of a new CEO, Satya Nadella, in 2014 made a significant change to Microsoft’s communications and brand strategy. This change came after the introduction of its new mission statement, which focuses on empowering people and organizations worldwide to achieve greater things. The brand’s main aim is to unite various businesses around the world through its products and services.
Besides its new mission statement, the company has shifted its focus to a more comprehensive communication approach. It aims to ensure people associate it with its popular products such as Skype and Xbox.
These products now factor into ranking the brand alongside the Microsoft name itself. This factoring was not the case some years back. Microsoft has for long maintained product-centred communication. Its focus has switched to consumer benefits instead of just explaining the features of its products.
While it has been the norm for top brands to use corporate jargon in marketing, Microsoft is moving to a less product-centric approach. The company has changed its tone of voice by adopting a more emotional and human style. The humanised approach has helped to build a better relationship with every client.
3rd Most Valuable Brand – Amazon
Focusing on Customer Satisfaction
Amazon’s biggest strength has been its ability to invent on behalf of its customers. Simply put, the company seeks to be a pioneer of new things that nobody else has provided to consumers. The brand has invested in creating new product categories and discovering new avenues.
Although Amazon acknowledges the fact that not every venture is likely to succeed, it is confident the effort is worthwhile. The main goal is to hit a higher percentage of success rather than concentrate on projects that have failed.
According to the company’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, the passion for discovering new avenues drives the brand to different pathways. Some turn out to be unsuccessful, but others open up into broader horizons. Its success is the outcome of continually testing new waters until something good comes out of it. This forward-thinking approach has made the company rank among the top four brands in the world.
Amazon is one of the most customer-centric brands in the world. Its approach focuses on three rational benefits to consumers:
- A wide range of products
- Affordable prices
- Great shopping experience
These values have been the pillars of the company’s success over the years. Amazon’s management has succeeded in making these consumer benefits part of the company’s DNA.
The emotional component has made it possible for Amazon to be a key player in categories that are entirely different from its mandate. The company’s emotive approach has made it a serious competitor in numerous fields as its human and warm communication appeals to more people compared to the strategies used by other brands.
The ability of any brand to create employment is a significant factor in its success. Amazon is an employer brand that boasts of a strong EVP (Employer Value Proposition). This rating improves the goodwill and confidence of customers.
2nd Most Valuable Brand – Google
Google is the most common source of information in the world today. Its diverse portfolio of unique products such as Google Chrome, Google Search, and Google Maps has enabled people to learn more about the world around them. It helps people worldwide to find information with much convenience and ease.
The company’s main strength has been its ability to understand and analyse the intentions of searchers. It’s also able to distinguish between unreliable and reliable sources of data, which makes it a trusted source of information. Most people associate Google with intelligence.
From its mission statement, the brand seeks to provide organised information and enhance accessibility to data. It aims to create a positive impact on people around the globe by providing relevant and useful information.
Google’s continued growth stems from its recent decision to start advertising its brand. Although the company was reluctant to engage in promotion, its management came to the realization that marketing was necessary. The only way people could know about its products was through effective marketing communication. This shift in strategy has boosted Google’s outreach in recent years since more people are aware of the company’s products
Worlds Most Valuable Brand – Apple
Focusing on the Flagship Projects
Apple has maintained its mission of improving the world by providing better technology. However, the company has made significant changes to its messaging and communication strategies. It has grown from being a mere challenger to becoming an industry leader in the tech market.
To become the number one ranked brand in the world, the brand had to switch to a more mainstream communication approach. Its marketing strategy had to move from image-driven communication to advertising that focused on the benefits of Apple’s flagship projects. They also moved to literal messaging instead of using symbolism.
The adverts that Apple has been pushing in recent years aim to bring out a warmer image of the company. Its adverts are hilarious and human, which has proven aspirational and uplifting.
For any industry leader, staying at the top is not a walk in the park. The management must employ new strategies that keep the company ahead of its competitors. For instance, Apple has made significant strides to have the edge over other brands by establishing a more mainstream communication approach. Amazon, on the other hand, has shifted to a style of communication that is more emotive while Google has heightened its marketing and brand activities in the recent past. Microsoft is also trying to stay relevant by including its top brands in its mission statement.
Business branding is one of the most crucial factors for any venture that is working towards becoming an industry leader. It helps to make people notice and remember your brand for years to come. For instance, employing the right brand strategy in Brisbane creates a memorable impression on your clients; it also gives them an idea of what to expect from your business.
You may not become one of the most valuable brands in the world, but an excellent brand positioning will help your business on the road there!
f you are in search of a reliable brand agency in Brisbane, contact Soak Creative today to speak with one of our Brand Strategists. We will help you to make the best of your business or project.