The Most Influential Brands in Canada 2011

January 27, 2012By:

Our first Ad Week Toronto event on Tuesday, January 24th was the Ipsos Most Influential Brands in Canada presentation by Ipsos Reid President Market Research Canada East Steve Levy.

** Please excuse the graphic, I took a photo of the list with my iPhone and have not been able to find the complete list online… **

To determine the most influential brands in Canada, Ipsos developed an influence index where brands could obtain points ranging from 14 to a total of 427, the latter being the most influential.
The presentation did not go into detail as to how they polled Canadians, or the type of survey used but did say that it was completed November 23rd – 30th, 2011 by 1013 Canadians.

The 1013 respondents were polled and asked to identify the brands that they identified with in the following ways (known as the 6 dimensions of influence): relevance to the consumer, the brand is leading edge, shows corporate citizenship, has a presence, is engaging and trustworthy. The 100 brands in the survey were based on their advertising spend.

Levy stated that in order to determine the influence the top 100 brands held over each Canadian consumer “needed to make the consumer aware of something new, change their life in someway in their everyday life, make their life more interesting, offer something  really important in the world today, or be fundamental to the consumers life, or changed the way the consumer shops”.

The Top 10 Most Influential Brands in Canada Are:

10. Airmiles

Established in 1992 Airmiles was developed out of a desire to promote a new type of loyalty program and was the first of its kind to support a “coalition of retail partners” that worked together under one loyalty program. The influence dimensions that Airmiles had with consumers was it was leading edge and a trustworthy company. Airmiles came in with an Index of 187.

Fun Fact: 10 million Canadian’s have a loyalty card.

9. YouTube

Launched in 2005, YouTube revolutionized the way people consumed content online. Canadian consumers voted the company high in have a leading edge, being highly relevant to today’s consumers and their lifestyle and , engaging. YouTube has an Influence index 189.

Fun Fact: YouTube is highly relevant – 1 in 3 Canadians use YouTube daily. It has 2 billion global users per day. Every 60 seconds 48 hours of content is uploaded. The poll also found YouTube to be highly engaging – 21% of Canadians would be more than happy to “like” YouTube on Facebook.

8. Visa

Founded in 1976 and an influence index of 214, Visa was found to be highly relevant with Canadians and to have a large presence and be highly trustworthy. By year 2000 1 billion cards had been issued. Visa processes 30 million transactions per day. Fun Facts: Visa was found to score as 3x more prominent than all other brands in top 100 surveyed. Currently, 4 in 10 Canadians use Visa. Did you also know that the blue line represents the blue sky of California and the gold strip is to represent the sandy beaches?

7. Facebook

I personally though Facebook would score higher on the influence index, however it came in with a score of 219 and was found to rate high in engagement, relevancy, and be a leading edge brand in the eyes of Canadian consumers.

Fun Facts: Facebook is highly engaging for Canadians: There are 700,000 new users signing on per day, 60million status updates daily, each person has an average of 130 friends. Each of these 130 people send an average of 8 friend requests per month, spend 55 min/day, make 25 comments, “like” 4 fan pages, and belong to 13 groups.

6. CBC

Every Canadian loves the CBC (remember the public rage when they tried to rid the CBC of Ron MacLean?). It’s part of our culture and Canadians still feel strong about it. It was found to be highly relevant, engaging and a trustworthy brand to Canadians.

Fun Fact: Hockey Night in Canada has been on since 1952!

5. Walmart

Walmart has 4000 retail stores worldwide and an approximate ad spend of 53 Million (mostly on TV), making its presence in Canadian households quite prominent. The 5th most influential Canadian brand, Walmart scored 293 on the Ipsos influence index. Canadians also noted they found the brand highly trustworthy. This likely is to do with its slogan of “The Lowest Price. Always.” – something the brand has done a good job at ensuring for their customers.

Fun Fact: Walmart is #1 on the Fortune 500 list.

4. Apple

A brand with a large Canadian presence, trustworthy image, and producing leading edge technology, Apple came in with a Ipsos influence index of 308. There is clearly no shortage in demand for apple, and being the first to introduce products to the market has helped Apple to establish itself as one of the most trustworthy brands in Canada.

Fun Fact: 7 in 10 Canadians surveyed can’t wait to hear what Apple will do next.

3. President’s Choice

Established in 1984, this brand scored high in relevance to the consumer and is thought to be extremely trustworthy. Obtained an Ipsos influence index of 344. The brand is also extremely relevant – more than half of adult population in Canada buys Presidents Choice products.

Fun Fact: The brand also scored high points in the trust index for having its own financial institution. Where else can you get a chocolate chip cookie and do your banking at the same time?

2. Google

Founded in 1998 and obtained an Ipsos index of 403, Google is 30x more influential in Canada then H&M (who scored an influence index of 14, making it 100 on the list). The brand is highly relevant in the every day life of Canadians, is leading edge and trustworthy.

Fun Facts: Half of Canadian population use Google once per day. The site also receives 1 billion unique users per month. Have you watched the dear Sophie Google commercial? Be warned, it’s a tear jerker, but clearly illustrates why Google and its products are so relevant in our lives.

1. Microsoft

The whole audience at this presentation was shocked when Microsoft was announced as the #1 most influential brand in Canada. Attendees were predicting Canadian Tire, Tim Hortons…but Microsoft? Really?…Ok Ipsos.

For 35 years, Microsoft has been the #1 provider of operating systems and obtained an Ipsos influence index of 427. Interestingly, Microsoft is an extremely strong spender but not the top spender out of all brands on top 100, with an ad spend of just 23 million in 2010 on TV campaigns. This is just 1 10th of what Ford spent that same year; proving that just because your ad spend is large doesn’t mean it will buy you influence or the trust of consumers.

Fun Fact: Microsoft is the most widely operating system in the world. There were 40 million copies of of Windows 95 sold.

Ipsos also revealed that 41% of Canadians polled feel that Microsoft is dependable (again, really?) And 47% of Canadians polled feel that Microsoft have changed the landscape. Have these Canadians not heard of a little company called Apple?

Do you agree with Microsoft being the most influential brand in Canada? Disagree? Let us know in the comments below!

You can also visit the Ipsos website for more about this study.