A new poll from Axios Harris which surveys over 33,000 Americans nationally about the 100 most visible companies in the country is showing that brands are having some trouble navigating an increasingly complex socio-political landscape.
The companies are ranked by survey responders across seven different dimensions like trust, ethics, growth, service, etc. That then creates an aggregate score that provides insight on how consumers view the company’s reputation.
Overall, grocery chain brands a faring well this year, with Trader Joe’s ranked #1, HEB Grocery at #2 and Wegmans sitting at #5, dominating the top 10. Previously, Patagonia held onto their position at #1, but has fallen to #3.
This year, hardware technology companies like Samsung, Sony, IBM and Microsoft are seeing dramatic jumps in their rankings from the previous year, with high scores in growth and vision dimensions.
But it hasn’t been positive for all and there are some clear indicators that brands are facing some difficulties when it comes to navigating a fraught political environment.
For example, Disney has fallen hard from 37th just a year ago to now 65th place, which is likely from the company’s decision to speak out on Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill. For McDonald’s, a delay in pulling its business out of Russia likely affected the company’s reputation negatively this year among survey respondents.
This is all likely because 31% of respondents say that companies should prioritize the views of customers moreso than its shareholders (16%). According to Axios, companies that had clear partisan affiliations were ranked as having higher trust and responsibility scores than those that did not last year.