Hot brands and why people want them

Click here to read the cover feature on the top most desired brands
Click here to see why Red Cross is a hot brand

Clear’s research segments people’s personalities based on the brands they most desire and how they describe themselves. Brands either play an aspirational role for people, or they mirror a person’s own values and beliefs.

About three-quarters of the 4,000 people surveyed show clear desire for brands with certain personality types. The remaining quarter don’t have this strong preference for particular brands.


Cool hunters: Marketers that make their brands disrupt categories will get a following from people who want products that fill a gap in their lives, making it more exciting. Cool hunters want the latest gadgets and brands which make them more fun. They aspire to owning brands such as Ferrari (at number 52 in the list) or Agent Provocateur (at 99). This group say they are affected by advertising and 25% of these people are over 55.

Most desired brands: Ferrari, Aston Martin, iPhone, Oakley and Agent Provocateur


Social butterflies: Most of this group is female and under 35 and they like owning brands before their peers. They want to be open- minded and sociable and look for brands that help them achieve this, such as Disney (14), Moët & Chandon (57) and Cadbury (4). Brands wanting to appeal to this group should appear inclusive in their marketing and keep communicating their messages clearly.

Most desired brands: Disney, Lindt, Moët & Chandon, Cadbury, Lego and Nando’s



These people love luxury goods and want to be seen with brands that are as image-conscious as they are, such as Jaguar (35), Sony (7) and Tiffany (42). So if your brand exudes sophistication and controls its image, these people are for you.

Most desired brands: Apple, Jaguar, Sony, Tiffany, Cartier and Porsche

Responsible citizens: Most of this group are over 25 years old and lag behind trends. They want brands that are focused on being careful and sensible, such as Fairtrade (9), Dettol (82) and AA (90). Marketers wanting to appeal to this group would do well to show social responsibility and be consistent in their communications.

Most desired brands: Red Cross, Fairtrade, Dettol, AA, Unicef and Post Office

Respect commanders: The people in this mostly middle-aged male group are happy to pay for quality and won’t be swayed by others’ views. They want brands that they see as independent, organised and competitive, such as Intel (26), Mercedes (49) and Google (15) and will respond to brands with a direct tone of voice.


Most desired brands: Bentley, Google, Intel, Mercedes, Microsoft and Rolls-Royce

Safe players: These people think they are the most reliable of the lot and desire brands that match this trait, such as Waitrose (81), John Lewis (41) and Rolls-Royce (2). They say they are not affected by advertising and prefer trusted products – so marketers wanting to appeal to them should offer reassurance and stability.

Most desired brands: Waitrose, Rolls-Royce, John Lewis and British Airways

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