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Havas Media’s ‘Meaningful Brands’ shows Indians ‘most grateful’ customers

The study shows Indians registered the strongest relationship with brands; 68 per cent Indians generally trust brands; core categories like F&B brands are seen as meaningful

BestMedianfo Bureau | Delhi | May 27, 2014


The results from Havas Media Group’s 2013 Meaningful Brands study statistically demonstrate that Meaningful Brands outperform the stock market by 120%. It demonstrates in hard financial terms, how the relationship between people and brands can benefit from measuring, communicating and delivering increased well-being.

In its sixth year, the 2013 findings show Indians as the ‘most passionate and grateful’ customers across the globe, believing brands ‘can and should’ contribute positively to their overall quality of life. People in India tend to believe the overall intentions of brands yet are a bit sceptical of their communication creating huge opportunities for brands to make a real, tangible meaningful difference. India is increasingly expecting brands to enhance personal well-being as brands become aspirational symbols of their improved standard of living.

The study measures 13 dimensions: impact of the brand’s ‘Marketplace’ benefits alongside its impact on 12 different areas of ‘Well-being’ (Personal and Collective), for a comprehensive view of its effect on quality of life. Unique in scale – 700 brands, over 134,000 consumers and 23 countries – it measures the benefits brands bring to people’s lives. The Meaningful Brand Index (MBi) forms the core of the Meaningful Brands framework allowing a view of brand results in terms of consumer perception over time.

Anita Nayyar Anita Nayyar

Anita Nayyar, CEO, Havas Media Group, India & South Asia, said, “The India findings highlight deep customer involvement with brands, making ‘meaningful’ the sweet spot of brand strategy in India. Meaningful today is real business, delivering what matters when in the truest economic and social sense. It drives brands to establish relationship connections with their customers directed towards sustained personal, societal and financial success.”

India findings

Consumers in India not only trust brands more but also expect more:

  • 68% people in India generally trust brands (Asia 58%, US 36%, Global avg. 45%)
  • 71% believe that brands can play a role in improving their quality of life and well-being (Asia 65%, US 41%, Global avg. 50%)
  • 82% think companies and brands should play a role in improving our quality of life and well-being (Asia 77%, Global avg. 70%)
  • 79% agree that large companies should be actively involved in solving social and environmental problems (Asia 75%, Global avg. 71%)

Modern day life and livelihood pressures dominate the psyche of Indians:

  • 3 key issues Indians cannot live without: People who care, save money & better manage spending, Adopt a healthy lifestyle
  • 3 key issues Indians want to devote more time to: Learn new skills, Adopt a healthy lifestyle, Simplify and organise life to gain more time
Mohit Joshi Mohit Joshi

“More meaningful global brands are likely to come from emerging than western markets where brands need to reinvent themselves to reconnect with people, to avoid getting commoditised. This presents huge opportunities for existing and new brands to establish meaningful connections with their customers in India. Here consumers are still warming up to brands and core categories like F&B brands are seen as meaningful. The study is scalable and throws up rich inferences for a strategic outlook. LIC is an outlier being in the insurance category, yet completely in sync with Indian touch-points, thus it is India’s 2013 top meaningful brand,” said Mohit Joshi, MD, Havas Media India.

Asia Pacific findings

  • People’s relationship with brands is stronger: 53% believe brands contribute notably to improving their quality of life and well-being (West Europe 29%, USA 36%, Global avg. 40%)
  • 52% think brands communicate honestly about their commitments and promises (West Europe 21%, USA 26%, Global avg. 32%)

Personal ‘well-being’ increases 2% importance (US 5%, Europe 2%) and dethrones Collective (losing 3% since 2011)

Global results statistically demonstrate

  • Meaningful Brands outperform the stock markets by 120% - on par with the top hedge funds
  • The majority of people worldwide wouldn't care if 73% of brands disappeared tomorrow
  • Only 20% of brands worldwide are seen to meaningfully positively impact people's lives

Top 12 Meaningful Brands 2013


Life Insurance Corporation (LIC), Britannia, Cadbury, Sony, Samsung, Parle-G, Unilever, Tata Motors, Airtel, Hyundai, LGE and Maruti


Google, Samsung, Microsoft, Nestle, Sony, IKEA, Dove, Nike, Wal-Mart, DANONE, Philips and P&G

Sector trends:

India Top 3 Sectors: F&B, Auto and IT & Consumer Electronics (ITC)

Global Top 3 Sectors: Retail, F&B, ITC

Brands can break sector limitations and emerge outliers disrupting all categories as Life Insurance Corporation in India. 2013 shows a marked increase in the importance of ITC globally, half of the top ten brands are technological; these act as enablers to empower us to achieve our potential.

Indian brands having greatest attachment (highest percent of people who would care if they disappeared):

LIC, Cadbury, Unilever

Geographical trends: Continuing the trend from 2011, only 20% of brands make a significant difference to people’s well-being with a growing gap between developed and emerging markets (Europe 5%, USA 9%, Asia 39%). In Europe and the US, people would not care if 92% of brands disappeared. In Asia, people are attached six times more.

A move towards the individual

Since 2011, individual quality of life and personal well-being have become increasingly important in western economies. In emerging markets, people place more importance on a brand’s impact on their community and environment. At the same time, people in India expect brands to enhance their individual and personal lifestyles. The data shows the majority of top performing brands taking a holistic approach contributing to both.

See the full study here:

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