Puteaux, France — Amazon.com, Inc. tops the list of Havas Media Group’s Meaningful Brands study, while Target Stores, Inc. ranked second, ahead of Google, Inc. in the fifth spot and Kraft Foods Group in sixth place.
The results are based on analysis that connects human well-being with brands at a business level, Havas reports. The company measured the personal and emotional benefits of more than 700 brands with 134,000 consumers in 23 countries.
The study shows the disconnection between brands and consumers is high — globally, consumers wouldn't care if 73 percent of brands disappeared tomorrow and in the U.S., 92 percent of brands could cease to exist and consumers wouldn't miss them.
Findings suggest consumers’ lack of trust in companies is the reason for the divide with just 36 percent of consumers saying they think brands work hard at improving quality of life and well-being, while 71 percent think that's something they should do. As such, only 40 percent of people in the U.S. trust brands.
“Personal well-being and emotional connection have become increasingly important in 2013,” Havas reports. “Nevertheless, the most meaningful global brands take a holistic approach, balancing both personal and collective well-being. Meaningfulness varies across categories: travel and tourism and retail are most valued. Consumer goods, finance and insurance and auto brands are of the least value.”
As consumers tighten their budgets, family, value/savings, stability/safety and health have risen to the top of the priority list, while luxury/social status and entertainment are on the decline, research shows. Technology is another driver of brand popularity with consumers reporting brands such as Apple and Google as being especially meaningful. Data show functional brands and retailers is another group that greatly contributes to consumers' lives and delivers more human value.