Monday, March 3, 2008

2008 Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index

Brand Keys has released the results of their 2008 Customer Loyalty Engagement Index. This year there are more ‘ties’ in terms of loyalty brand rankings than there have been in the past 10 years of the Index. The best you can say about that is it’s a sign of category standardization, but, more likely, the curtain has been pulled back from brands, exposing products and services that have lost their ‘brandness’ and are turning into Category Placeholders.

Among the 57 categories and 382 brands measured in 2008, the product and service brands that customers ranked 1st in terms of meeting and exceeding their expectations for the category were:

-Airlines: JetBlue and Southwest
-Allergy Medicine (OTC): Benadryl and Tylenol
-Allergy Medicine (Rx): Clarinex and Zyrtec
-Athletic Footwear: Air Jordan and New Balance
-Automotive: Toyota
-Banks: Wachovia and Washington Mutual
-Beer (Light): Coors Light
-Beer (regular): Sam Adams
-Bottled Water: Aquafina and Fiji
-Car Insurance: Geico
-Car Rental (Airport Locations): Hertz
-Car Rental (AO Locations): Avis
-Casual Dining: Olive Garden
-Cell Phones: Samsung
-Clothing Catalogues: L.L.Bean
-Coffee: Dunkin’ Donuts
-Computers: Apple
-Cosmetics (Luxury): Estee Lauder
-Cosmetics (Mass Merchandiser): Maybelline
-Credit Cards: Discover Card
-Diapers: Playskool and Wal-Mart White Cloud
-DVD Players: Samsung
-Energy Provider: PSE&G
-Evening News Show: ABC
-Gasoline: BP and Sunoco
-HDTV (LCD): Samsung
-HDTV (Plasma): Panasonic and Pioneer
-Hotels (Luxury): W Hotels
-Hotels (Upscale): Embassy Suites and Hyatt
-Hotels (Midscale): Comfort Inn
-Hotels (Economy): Day’s Inn
-Insurance Company: NY Life
-Laundry Detergent: Tide
-Long Distance Provider: AT&T and Verizon
-Major League Sports: National Football League
-Morning News Shows: Good Morning America (ABC) and The Today Show (NBC)
-Mutual Funds: T. Rowe Price
-MFP Office Copier: Konica Minolta
-On-line Books & Music:
-On-line Brokerage:
-On-line Travel Sites: and
-OTC Pain Reliever: Tylenol
-Parcel Delivery: UPS
-Pizza: Domino’s and Papa John’s
-Quick-Serve Restaurants: McDonald’s and Subway
-Retail Stores (Apparel): Victoria’s Secret
-Retail Stores (Discount): Wal-Mart
-Retail Stores (Department): Macy’s
-Retail Stores (Electronics): Best Buy
-Retail Stores (Office Supply): Staples
-Retail Stores (Home Improvement): Lowe’s and True Value
-Satellite Radio: XM
-Search Engines: Google
-Soft Drinks (Diet): Diet Pepsi
-Soft Dinks (Regular): Pepsi
-Toothpaste: Crest
-Wireless Phone Service: AT&T and Verizon

At a time when most brands continue to struggle to differentiate themselves from their competition and engage their customers in order to remain profitable, these rankings serve as both an opportunity and warning. The brands that answer this warning with a truly consumer-centric view of their category, based on predictive loyalty metrics, will gain the most, and establish themselves as 21st century brands and not commodities.

More information on Customer Loyalty can be found at

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