Google, Samsung and Netflix lead top global brands of 2021

Big tech brands, bolstered by the pandemic, lead the way in consumers’ favourite brands of last year. 

By William Furney, content marketing manager, Reachology

Google is the world’s favourite brand, according to a new global survey, cementing its dominance of the internet as the leading search engine and where the majority of people go to find information, use services and buy products online. It’s also the most popular website on the planet, with an astonishing 3.6 billion searches every day and commanding an almighty 92% share of the search market, as the following chart, from Statista, demonstrates:

The survey — Global Best Brand Rankings 2021 and carried out by UK polling organisation YouGov — asked people in 54 markets around the world what their favourite brands were. Next in the list of the top 10 most favoured brands globally was South Korean electronics firm Samsung and US streaming service Netflix

Both have undoubtedly enjoyed a boom, along with Google, during the pandemic, as people consume content digitally, rather than printed media, due to lockdowns and other measures designed to curb the spread of covid. Those who took part in the report judged brands based on their impression of companies and the quality, value and satisfaction they derive from their products and services, as well as their reputation.

Social media brand stars

Landing in fourth place in the global 10 favourite brands among consumers was YouTube – another score for Google, as it owns the video platform – while the fifth spot went to messaging service WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, which placed itself under a newly formed brand, Meta, last year. Despite its nearly 3 billion monthly active users, Facebook itself does not appear in the top 10 best brands, possibly due to a rolling series of scandals at the social media giant that may have dented trust and harmed its reputation. 

Participants selected Singapore-based shopping platform Shopee, e-commerce giant Amazon and sportswear firm Adidas for sixth, seventh and eight places, respectively. Disinfectant brand Dettol (owned by British multinational Reckitt, and, again, possibly due to the pandemic) and sports-apparel company Nike rounded out the top 10 brands most cherished by respondents who took part in the survey. 

These and many, much smaller enterprises are now using digital PR to boost their brands’ image and get ahead of the competition. Equally importantly, they’re also devising digital PR campaigns — either themselves or by appointing a digital PR agency — to protect their brand image at a time when a single comment on social media can prove harmful. The level of trolling and outright hatred online has risen to alarming levels in recent times, leading some companies, like the UK’s Lush, to quit most social media networks until it’s “safe to return”, for themselves and users. 

Tech brands ‘indispensable’ during pandemic

Commenting on the findings of the 2021 best brands report, YouGov said it showed that technology firms continue to power ahead and became vital for people during the second year of the covid-19 pandemic as most people were stuck at home, where many were still working from.

“For the past 18 months, media brands such as Netflix, YouTube and WhatsApp offered comfort and entertainment for consumers around the globe,” it said. “These brands became virtually indispensable during the pandemic and their top five performances in this year’s Global Best Brand Rankings reflect just how much they captured people’s attentions.”

If you’d like to know how to increase awareness of your bands online, and to protect them from harm, schedule a free initial call with leading digital PR agency Reachology now.

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