Social media analytics company NetBase believes that the key to marketing success for a brand is getting consumers to love it and to express that love and positive sentiment about the brand in conversations with friends and family.
NetBase spends lots of time mining the Internet for social media conversations about brands that reflect those sentiments. In a report earlier this year, it offered up a list of top luxury brands. Its latest data release was issued during the recent SXSW conference in Austin, Texas, where it revealed its Top 100 Brand LoveList for 2015.
The Top 100 most loved brands span 13 different industries, but two dominate—retail and automotive. Retail brands, which include discount and department stores, restaurants, fashion chains and grocery stores, make up 33% of the list. Automotive companies make up 13% of the list. Food and beverage brands make up 10%. Only one financial services company and one insurance company made the Top 100.
Brands in the Top 100 LoveList are from 11 different countries, with 62% from the U.S. and 15% from Japan. South Korea has 5% of the brands on the list, France and Germany 4% each, Italy and the U.K. 3% each, and Sweden, Austria, Denmark and China, 1% each.
NetBase says the 10 most consumer-loved brands on the Top 100 list are from the United States and that the most-loved individual brand is iPhone, which held a sizable margin over second-place Disney and iPhone’s parent company Apple, which ranked third. Rounding out the Top 10 most loved brands by consumers were boutique online retailer Etsy, iPad, MacBook Air, Starbucks, Netflix, Chipotle and McDonald’s.
The Top 10 most-loved brands account for 44.8% or over 10 million “love” mentions on social media, NetBase says. Disney is the most-loved media brand and Starbucks is the highest-ranking retail brand on the love list.
The next 10 in order include: Nike, Amazon, Taco Bell, Pokemon, Audi, PlayStation, Coca-Cola, Lego, eBay and Oreo. These brands account for about 17.4%, or over 4 million “love” mentions on social media, and include one brand each from Denmark and Germany, two from Japan and six from the United States.
Nike, in 11th place, is the top leisure/sports company on the LoveList and Japan’s highest-ranking brand is Pokemon in 14th place. Top ranking car and first German brand on the LoveList is Audi in 15th place, and PlayStation is the highest-ranking gaming system in 16th place. The top beverage brand is Coke in 17th place and the only Danish brand to make the Top 100 Lovelist is Lego in 18th place.
Brands 21-30 on the LoveList include: Pandora, Samsung, Sony, Subway, Chick-fil-A, Xfinity, Walmart, Cheetos, LG and BMW. Those brands received more than 1.7 million love mentions, or a 7.2% share of the total. The highest-ranking South Korean company, Samsung, is in that group, while Xfinity is the only cable/Internet media company on the Top 100 list in 26th place.
Brands 31-40 on the list include: Nutella, Amazon, In-N-Out, Nintendo, Microsoft, Victoria’s Secret, Chanel, Ford, Canon and HTC. Nutella is the highest-ranking Italian brand and Chanel from France is the highest-rated luxury brand. Ford, at 38th overall, is the most loved auto company.
Brands 41-50 include: KFC, Mercedes, Ferrari, Honda, Adidas, IKEA, Target, Hewlett-Packard, Mustang and IHOP. KFC is the second Yum Brands’ company on the list at 41, joining 13th ranked Taco Bell.
Brands 51-60 on the LoveList include: State Farm, Sprite, Gatorade, Pizza Hut, Wendy’s, Chevrolet, Whataburger, Nokia, Doritos and Gucci. State Farm, at No. 51, is the only insurance brand on the Top 100 LoveList. While Pizza Hut becomes the third-ranked Yum Brands restaurant chain on the list at No. 54.
Brands 61-70 include: Olive Garden, Hello Kitty, Dove, Applebee’s, Toyota, Best Buy, Costco, Nikon, Pepsi and Dior. Dove, at number 63, is the highest-ranked U.K. brand on the LoveList.
Brands 71-80 on the LoveList include Louis Vitton, MasterCad, Porsche, WaffleHouse, Red Bull, Samsung Galaxy, Assassin’s Creed, Topshop, Nissan and Crocs. MasterCard at No. 72 is the highest-rated financial service brand on the LoveList and Assassin’s Creed at 77 is the second-highest-rated video game on the list.
Brands 81-90 include Sprint, Verizon, Budweiser, Burger King, Panasonic, Tesco, Marriott, Lexus, T-Mobile and IBM. This group includes the top three telecom companies on the list and at 83rd, Budweiser is the highest-ranking beer on the Top 100 LoveList.
Brands 91-100 include Lenovo, Sephora, Suburu, Sears, Motorola, Dragon Age, Forever 21, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and Nordstrom. Lenovo, at 91, is the only brand from China to make the Top 100. Sears is the highest-ranking department store on the list at 94, and Nordstrom is second at 100. Appearing earlier on the list were discount chains Walmart and Target.
The NetBase LoveList is based on analysis of more than 23.7 million mentions of “love” for brands that it found across 84 different countries while monitoring social media. Its technology analyzes the data and uses a patented language-processing engine that understands 42 languages as well as slang, abbreviations, misspellings and other criteria used to gather the data. And NetBase says it took steps to remove fake posts generated by bots and spam engines.
Says the LoveList report: “Today we can understand the minds of consumers like never before. Social media provides a constant revelation about how consumers feel towards brands. For businesses, it’s a gold mine for building and protecting consumer love—if you can make sense of it all.”
And the report adds, “Social media passion offers new insights into brand health, allows measurement of campaigns against lasting emotional assets and informs geographical action, such as where a love potion may be in order before getting to business as usual. And return on investments has been tied to return on brand love.”
Its advice to brands: “Convert millions of social comments about brand love into social testimonial advertising, influencer marketing and future programs that will help grow your brand with new audiences.”
NetBase says the list left out a number of categories including religion, institutions, locations, celebrities, TV shows, entertainers and media outlets.
Data for the report was gathered for a full year—from February 14, 2014 to February 15, 2015, and more than 150,000 brands were examined.