One thing’s for sure in 2018—brands that are linked in some way to smartphones excel. Recent research from brand intimacy agency MLBM reveals that brands within the smartphone ecosystem outperform all others that were ranked—they tend to build more emotional bonds with consumers by leveraging the functions, ubiquity and highly-personalized benefits that smartphones deliver.
The study also reveals there is a pecking order or hierarchy of intimacy, with greater intimacy the seemingly closer the user gets to the device itself. Manufacturers (Apple, Samsung), top the list followed by content (Netflix, Disney), information and services (Google), access (AT&T, Verizon) and finally app (Facebook, Uber) brands. There is over a 200 percent difference between the top performing manufacturer brands and the lowest performing app brands.
The firm’s Brand Intimacy 2017 Report, which focuses on strategy, design, creative and technology, revealed the technology & telecommunications industry ranked fourth out of 15 industries ranked. Brand Intimacy is defined as a new paradigm that leverages and strengthens the emotional bonds between a person and a brand.
According to the 2017 report, top ranked intimate brands continued to outperform the S&P and Fortune 500 indices in revenue and profit over the past 10 years.
“Why this matters is that the greater the Brand Intimacy Quotient score, the more consumers are willing to pay and the less they are willing to live without a brand,” said Mario Natarelli, managing partner at MBLM, in a news release.
“Brands that are a part of this ecosystem tend to be seen as enhancing consumers, making them smarter, more capable and more connected and an essential part of their daily lives. Any brand that can become a relevant part of the smartphone ecosystem needs to be, especially if they hope to create more emotional connections with their stakeholders,” added Natarelli.
Exploring the components that create brand intimacy, brands in the smartphone ecosystem perform above average not only in the Enhancement archetype but also across the three Stages that measure the degree of intensity.
“With the ever-growing ubiquity of the smartphone it will be interesting to see if new brands can take any share from the brands that have established a place within the ecosystem,” said Natarelli.
This year’s report contains the most comprehensive rankings of brands based on emotion, analyzing the responses of 6,000 consumers and 54,000 brand evaluations across 15 industries in the U.S., Mexico and UAE. MBLM’s reports and interactive Brand Ranking Tool showcase the performance of almost 400 brands, revealing the characteristics and intensity of the consumer bonds.
During 2016, Praxis Research Partners conducted an online quantitative survey among 6,000 consumers in the United States (3,000), Mexico (2,000), and the United Arab Emirates (1,000). Participants were respondents who were screened for age (i.e. 18 to 64 years of age) and annual household income ($35,000 or more) in the U.S. and socioeconomic levels in Mexico and the UAE (A, B, and C socioeconomic levels).