Microsoft tops Superbrands survey

While Microsoft has topped the 2009/10 Superbrands survey, it also reveals that consumers are sticking with high-profile brands, despite often coming with a price premium.


Microsoft regained the top position from rival Google which this year dropped down to third position.

Meanwhile, the luxury watch brand Rolex entered the chart in second place overall in its first year appearing in the research.

British Airways came in fourth place, despite negative press attention over its chaotic opening of Terminal 5 ad multiple redundancies and the BBC was voted in fifth place.

Stephen Cheliotis, chief executive of The Centre for Brand Analysis, which administered the research on behalf of Superbrands UK, says aspirational and well-established brands have made gains in consumer perception ahead of firms like Google as they offer some permanence and reliability in uncertain times.

“Microsoft has done a lot with its consumer-facing operations to reclaim its top spot, whilst Google has been surrounded by controversy such as interest-based advertising and Streetview so have lost a bit of its credibility as the top super brand,” he says.

Another trend picked up by the research is the desire to save money. Cheaper food options have made large gains this year. McDonald’s has risen 227 places in the rankings and KFC is up 164 sports, although both remain outside the top 100.

Supermarkets are also rising up the rankings as people keep spending on vital foodstuffs. The more budget supermarkets, such as Asda, made particularly good progress with the brand rising 213 positions to 216th place.

This is a turnaround from the results of the research in previous years where fast food fell out of favour due to consumers adopting healthier lifestyles and claiming to be more concerned about their food choices.

Those brands that failed in the last 12 months, such as Woolworths, Zavvi and SCS appear to have made little impact on the consumers responding to the research, says Cheliotis, as these names never made it onto the list in the first place. Their absence can now perhaps be seen as a telling sign of problems to come.

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