The firm’s “Buzz”, YouGov’s measure of whether people have heard negative or positive things about a brand, has dipped from 0 on 10 July, which EDF dubbed “Green Britain Day”, to -8 on 28 July.
The energy supplier, the official sustainability partner of the London 2012 Olympic Games, encouraged Britons to do something ‘green for the team’
Rival energy suppliers were quick to launch activity extolling their own green credentials with one, Ecotricity, claiming EDF stole its own green union jack logo.
Brand perception also appears to have been damaged further by the penalty awarded against EDF by Ofgem for failing to meet connection deadlines for new customers.
Buzz stood at -4 on 23 July, the day before news broke of the fine and slumped to -8 just four days later.
A spokesman for EDF says the company has a “long-term strategy” for its brand, adding that “a short two-week analysis is not indicative of its development”.
“There are a number of brand indicators which show a positive picture of our brand growth over time,” he says.
Graeme Crossley, managing director of Brand Reputation says EDF is not the only energy supplier suffering from poor brand reputation, warning that customers are becoming “perpetual switchers” because price is the only way for consumers to differentiate between suppliers.
“Brands in this industry need to be looking for ways to improve brand reputation that goes beyond dual fuel discounts and direct debit savings and look at engaging with customers on a far deeper level that will in turn generate some loyalty and distinction to other suppliers,” he says.