Global 500 2017
Brand Finance has released a ranking of the most valuable brands of 2017. Below are the top stories according to Brand Finance.
- Google retains its position as the world’s most valuable brand
- Amazon nearly secured the top spot
- China’s biggest tech brands, Alibaba, WeChat and Tencent have grown by 94%, 103% and 124% respectively
Apple has for the last five years held sway as the world’s most valuable brand. Apple was once a paragon of branding excellence. It has a meticulously constructed, sleek and innovative visual identity that runs consistently through all its products, services and retail sites. Its monobrand structure created marketing efficiencies and helped to cement its logo as an icon of the 21st century. Reliability, user-friendly interfaces, knowledgeable staff and, most importantly, its transformative technology meant that the brand fulfilled its promises. Loyalty and advocacy reached cultish proportions with fans waiting days outside Apple stores for the latest release.
However, Apple’s evangelists are beginning to lose their faith. The snaking queues of early adopters have shrunk almost to the point of invisibility. Apple has failed to maintain its technological advantage and has repeatedly disillusioned its advocates with tweaks when material changes were expected.
Put simply, Apple has over-exploited the goodwill of its customers, it has failed to generate significant revenues from newer products such as the Apple Watch and cannot demonstrate that genuinely innovative technologies desired by consumers are in the pipeline. Its brand has lost its luster and must now compete on an increasingly level playing field not just with traditional rival Samsung, but a slew of Chinese brands such as Huawei and OnePlus in the smartphone market, Apple’s key source of profitability.
Brand Finance’s analysts had remained bullish about Apple’s potential to recover its lost momentum, but the rot has now truly set in, with brand value falling 27% since early 2016 to US$107 billion, which sees it lose its status as the Global 500 world’s most valuable brand