Havas Media has launched its Meaningful Retail study, highlighting the average UK consumer’s preferred choice of brand and the value consumers place on brands, including Amazon, Marks & Spencer and John Lewis.

The study is designed to measure the value consumers place on a brand name; in turn helping retailers to understand what influences consumer spending habits.

According to the results of the study, the most ‘meaningful brands’ can increase their share of customer spend seven fold, attracting 46% more spend than their rivals.


According to the study, the top 20 most meaningful brand in the UK in 2015 are…

1. Amazon
2. Marks & Spencer
3. John Lewis
4. Aldi
5. Sainsburys
6. Samsung
7. Boots
8. Lidl
9. Paypal
10. Sony
11. Kellogg’s
12. Proctor & Gamble
13. Dove
14. Asda
15. Tesco
16. Morrisons
17. Unilever
18. Bird’s Eye
19. Niveo
20. Argos

To come to their conclusions, Havas Media studied the effects of 1,000 brands across 12 industries on 300,000 people in 34 countries. The research covers all aspects of how purchase choices relate to people’s lives, including the impact on our collective wellbeing (the role brands play in our communities and the issues we care about), on our personal wellbeing (self-esteem, healthy lifestyles, connectivity with friends and family, making our lives easier, fitness and happiness) and marketplace factors, which relate to product performance such as quality and price.

Dominique Delport, global managing director Havas Media Group summarises: “Great marketing has a cumulative effect as it’s shared – it naturally flows and gains momentum. We will only share ideas if brands do stuff that matters to us. We now look to brands for meaningful connections – big or small. By understanding this, our Meaningful Brands project becomes central to how brands communicate in this new organic world.

This year, we’ve tackled one of the big issues for our industry – if meaningfulness is so crucial, how do you measure and create it in a way that CEOs can buy into, and marketers can evaluate? Our 2015 project pulls in data that spans across stock market, share of wallet and marketing KPIs enabling CEOs and CMOs to work together and crack the code to meaningfulness.”

In the UK, retail remains the top performing sector in comparison with other sectors in terms of meaningfulness and enhancing our quality of life.

Havas Media chief executive officer Paul Framton commented: “Our Meaningful Brands study shows that it’s not enough for brands to focus on building brand equity alone; people want to connect their lives to brands that make it possible for us to live well and consume better, and that takes commitment to relationship building.

“Today’s brand valuations are more likely to be built on customer loyalty than brand equity and we see that the ‘citizen consumer’ believes this to be true too. Meaningful brands are not only likely to gain purchase preference, loyalty and share of expenditure they’re also more trusted, even in brand agnostic markets like the UK and Germany. Seeing PayPal for example, shine as a top 10 Meaningful Brand in the UK versus traditional financial brands reflects this perfectly.

“The fact that 64% of Brits would care if Amazon disappeared demonstrates its unique, holistic contribution to our quality of life. Our survey shows that bad press on tax policies (which Starbucks suffered for) has not damaged Amazon’s success. Why? Because people believe Amazon is unique, it scores ahead of Ebay on savings, more responsible products and ‘making me happier’ (alongside price and service factors). Business models can’t be built on efficiency, scale or quality alone any longer. Meaningful Brands have momentum for the future. But today only 7% of brands in Europe are seen to make a positive contribution to people’s quality of life – the opportunity is there for many more to seize.”

Globally, the top meaningful brands include Samsung, Google, Nestlé, Bimbo, Sony, Microsoft, Nivea, Visa, IKEA and Intel. Following these leaders are HP, Dove (Unilever), Walmart, Gillette (P&G), Knorr (Unilever), Kellogg’s, Amazon, PayPal, Honda and Carrefour.