Independent research conducted by branding agency Principals, in conjunction with research and analytics firm The Navigators, has found ecostore to be the most authentic brand in New Zealand.
The Brand Alpha study seeks the opinion of New Zealand consumers around four key drivers of authenticity: visibility, value, vitality and virtue. The research is conducted each year and has been running for more than 10 years with a minimum of 300 nationally representative respondents per wave. The model has been proven to reliably measure the reputation of brands over time and to date, more than 200 brands have been tracked in seven markets across Asia Pacific.
The most recent wave of research, conducted in March, was presented at an event hosted by the New Zealand Marketing Association and Principals this morning.
In 2018, the research found New Zealanders considered Tesla the most authentic brand however following negative press for both the brand and its founder, the car manufacturer saw the largest drop in the survey sliding to sixth place. Ecostore rose from second place to lead the findings.
Says Wayde Bull, founder and planning director at Principals: “Ecostore’s impressive rise this year is explained by the brand’s growing visibility and sense of winning momentum in the market while sustaining its existing lead on virtue factors. It’s a brand that feels in tune with our times, having a strong ethical stance, strong declared beliefs and a sense that it cares about more than just making money. It’s a brand that enables caring Kiwis to act upon their environmental concerns in a practical, everyday way.”
Ecostore offers a range of award-winning home, body and baby products. The company’s ethics and values of authenticity and transparency are their highest priority.
Says Jemma Whiten, director of marketing and digital, Ecostore: “We are thrilled that consumers have chosen ecostore as the most authentic brand in the New Zealand market. We believe authenticity is key to growing a purpose-led brand in a highly competitive marketplace. Our purpose is to make the world a safer place, one person, one home at a time. This sits firmly at the centre of our brand’s vision and informs every business decision. It not only helps the overall good of society but also helps consumers know what we stand for.”
The Brand Alpha 2019 Top 20 Most Authentic Brands
5. Lewis Road Creamery
8. Air New Zealand
10. All Blacks
13. The Warehouse
20. Radio NZ National
Says Bull: “This year’s results confirm the fragile nature of brand leadership today. Just three of last year’s top five brands retain their top tier status; ecostore, Icebreaker and Lewis Road Creamery. Two new upstart brands, Lime and IKEA, join the top five, proving that perceived creativity and momentum now drive market cut-through as much as deep familiarity and a long and steady track record. For IKEA to debut in the top five without yet being open for business locally demonstrates the critical importance of novelty and category-breakout thinking to cut through with jaded customers today. Yet Tesla’s equally rapid rise and fall this year proves that too much heat and dust without evidence of meaningful delivery won’t get you far for long.”
This year, the research did a deep dive on how brands resonate with different generations. While ecostore was the highest-ranking brand for Centennials (16-to-17 year olds), Millennials (18-to-35 year olds) and Gen X (36-to-55 year olds), the older generations rated Icebreaker and The Warehouse higher.
The survey also gauged sentiment around Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and found the leader to outrank most brands. The Post-WW2 Generation saw only The Warehouse and Whittaker’s usurping the PM while Centennials, Millennials and Gen X found only three brands more authentic.