The most successful brands in the world also know how to talk with their customers, but according to a new report it’s not always the case that the largest companies are those with the best engagement.
Lewis, a global communications company, developed a Marketing Engagement Tracker (MET) that scores a brand based on 10 factors: tracking, user experience, security, content, mobile, marketing, sales funnel, personalization, response time and social media. Lewis dubs these elements Quantified Engagement.
To test out its new MET, Lewis analyzed the top 300 brands on Forbes’ Global 2000 list and published the findings in the first Marketing Engagement Index. What researchers discovered was a significant disconnect between brands with the highest engagement (MET) and those with the largest companies (Forbes Global 2000).
A brand’s region has a lot to do with marketing styles, the report observes. For example, engagement tactics are used more in the US while the world’s largest brands—State-run banks in China—have no use for traditional marketing. One exception is Apple, while number eight on Forbes’ list, ranked much lower on Lewis’ scale as it relies more on brand recognition and customer loyalty to drive revenue.
The top seven companies in the Lewis Global Marketing Engagement Index are all based in the United States, with the other three from Europe. No APAC brands made the top 10.
Microsoft scored the highest on Lewis’ global index with a score of 97.8—a feat that Lewis credits to leadership under CEO Satya Nadella. Bank of America, Intel, PNC and Allstate round out the top five, followed by Aetna, Unilever, Danone and Accenture.
The report gives credit—no pun intended—to financial brands who had to rebuild customer loyalty after the financial crisis of 2008-2009. Changing customer views are quickly proving which brands are agile and which are not, especially when it comes to sugar and plastic usage.
Applying its Marketing Engagement Tracker to Forbes’ Global 2000 rulers, Lewis found that some of the world’s largest brands are also the most engaging. For example, Bank of America is number two on both Forbes’ and Lewis’ lists. Wells Fargo, number seven on the Global 2000, scored number 12 on the MET.
Others did not fare as well, largely because of the different needs of state-run institutions. Forbes’ largest two brands—ICBC and China Construction Bank—scored nearly dead last in terms of engagement.
“Great companies don’t last forever unless they truly engage and evolve with their customers,” said Lewis. “What we have identified is that the majority of companies are not joined up and are inefficient in their approach to marketing.”