Tag Archives: ethics

10 Healthiest Brands in the U.S.

What makes a healthy brand? According to YouGov Brand Index, overall brand health takes into account “consumers’ perceptions of a brand’s quality, value, impression, satisfaction, reputation, and willingness to recommend the brand to others.”

Which brands are ranked the healthiest? There are few surprises in this year’s list. Here are the top brands across all categories:

      1. Band-Aid
      2. Amazon
      3. Google
      4. Craftsman
      5. Dawn
      6. YouTube
      7. Clorox
      8. M&M’s
      9. Lowe’s
      10. Quaker

The index also included ranks for various industries. For example, in airlines, Southwest ranked number one. Toyota topped the car category, and Dove topped the hair and skin care category.

Top brands with the best advertising awareness were also included. Leaders in this year’s list include Geico, McDonald’s, Verizon, AT&T, and Walmart. Brands that made the biggest awareness gains since 2016 include Uber, Blue Apron, Trivago, Dollar Shave Club, Lyft, Hulu, and Nintendo. Consumers value innovation and usefulness when evaluating brands. Each company on the list works hard to be the top in its category.

Which brands do you value and recommend to others?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Class discussion: What makes for a strong brand?
  2. What are favorite brands in the different industries such as automotive, appliances, cars, hotels, food, etc. (see the industry list on YouGov).
  3. Show the YouGov brand index: http://www.brandindex.com/ranking/us/2017-index
  4. Compare the students’ list with the rankings and discuss the findings.
  5. Now have students list brands that are weak or for which they have negative feelings.
  6. What could those brands do to improve their overall rankings?

Source:  YouGov Brand Index, Brandchannel.com

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Made in the USA?

It’s that patriotic time of year in the USA when citizens (and shoppers) show their support and pride in America. As could be expected, companies that advertise their patriotism can use it as a very effective marketing tool. After all, people want to be proud of their country and its accomplishments. But, what does it really mean when a company promotes its product as being “made in the USA?”

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), if a product is advertised as “Made in the USA” then “all or virtually all” of the product must have been made in the U.S. But, what does “virtually all” mean?

Again, the FTC states that the product should contain no (or negligible) foreign content. This means that all significant parts and processing must be of U.S. origin and final processing must also take place in the U.S. (includes the 50 states, District of Columbia, and all U.S. territories and possessions). These rules also apply to products that might not explicitly claim “made in the USA,” but may use images or American flags or U.S. maps, such as stating “true American quality.”

Take a close look at companies that state “made in the USA” and make sure the claim in legitimate.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What does it mean if a product advertises that it is made in America? What products make this claim?
  2. Show the FTC requirements: https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/complying-made-usa-standard and have students examine the requirements.
  3. Divide students into teams. Have each team search the Internet for products that claim to be “made in the USA” and examine if the claims are accurate.
  4. For products that do not make a full made in USA claim, what are other messages that could be made to clearly identify origins and processes?

Source:  Truth in Advertising

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2017 Corporate Reputation Survey

Reputation and brand management are extremely important to companies. Managing a corporation’s reputation is an increasingly fraught task in today’s divisive political and business climates. A company’s values and mission play a large role in its reputation among consumers.

A recently released Harris Poll report analyzes the “Reputation of America’s 100 Most Visible Companies.” The poll measures a company’s reputation based on the perception of 23,000 Americans. Six categories are used: Social Responsibility, Emotional Appeal, Product and Service, Vision and Leadership, Financial Performance, and Workplace Environment. The Reputation Quotient (RQ) for this year has 17 of the 100 most visible companies earning an “excellent reputation” and 34 companies received “very good.”

The top 10 highest-ranking companies are:

  1. Amazon
  2. Wegmans
  3. Publix
  4. Johnson & Johnson
  5. Apple
  6. UPS
  7. Walt Disney
  8. Google
  9. Tesla
  10. 3M Company

According to the study, the biggest risks are intentional wrongdoing or illegal actions, lying or misinterpreting the facts about a product, and intentional misuse of financial information for financial gain.

Big losers this year included a significant drop for Wells Fargo by 20 points, and the lowest ranking company is air bag manufacturer Takata.

What companies do you admire (or not)?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the importance of corporate reputation in marketing and branding.
  2. Poll students: Which companies do they thing would be ranked as high, and which as low?
  3. View and discuss the Harris Poll report: http://www.theharrispoll.com/reputation-quotient/
  4. Divide students into team. Have each team select a low ranked company and devise a program to help improve their reputation.
  5. Or, have students analyze why the top companies were ranked at those levels.

Source:  Harris Poll

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