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Made in Germany 4.0: The great BrandTrust Technology Brand Study

How resilient are German technology brands?

German technology brands – both B2B and B2C brands – urgently need new impulses. Because they have a problem: The label "Made in Germany" only helps to some extent, because it stands for quality, innovation, and reliability. But those have long become interchangeable factors that are also delivered by the international competition. The risk of degenerating from valued premium provider to arbitrary volume provider is increasing.
So what can technology brands do in order to continue growing profitably even during times of crisis? Their brand resilience now becomes a major success criterion. They must succeed at building a robust brand and use it correctly as a value-adding system.
But how resilient are German technology brands, both those in the B2B as well as those in the B2C sector? We examined this question with our BrandTrust Resilience Study "Made in Germany 4.0". We researched 51 technology brands from 12 B2C and B2B sectors in Germany. The study is based on the assessments of 70 decision makers and interviews with 3,300 customers and insiders. We did not use revenue, awareness, or image statistics, but ten indicators that can be used to measure and therefore control the brand resilience of a company.

 

These are the most resilient technology brands:

These are the 10 main results of the study:

  1. Miele – a role model for stability and agility.
  2. Two performance brands - Brose and Bosch – take the lead.
  3. "Made in Germany" alone is not enough anymore.
  4. Top management focuses too much on awareness.
  5. There is a problem with clarity, not with power of innovation.
  6. The search for suitable innovation partners and employees becomes a matter of survival.
  7. Constantly questioning yourself and letting yourself be inspired – that's how you become resilient.
  8. Differentiation cannot be achieved through the product, but through its value.
  9. Resilient brands build ecosystems instead of products.
  10. Automobile brands lose trust and relevance.

 

B2B and B2C brands – they have much in common

With few exceptions, both the B2B brands as well as the B2C brands we examined receive only average scores on the ten analyzed resilience indicators. B2B companies do better on the indicators employee pride and volume premium. B2B brands score alarmingly low on the indicators price premium and indispensability. So there is great potential for additional added value!

"We have to break down the preconception that B2B brands have to act completely different from B2C brands. B2B brands must learn that it has become a management job to properly convey the value of the peak performance – and B2C brands must learn that brands consist not merely of communicative shells, but have to deliver real peak performances," the initiator of the study, Jürgen Gietl, summarizes in a n interview with Marconomy.

How the BrandTrust Brand Resilience Index® works:

The BrandTrust Resilience Index® is a method for measuring and therefore controlling brand resilience – i.e. the stability and agility of brand companies. As a foundation, BrandTrust interviewed over 150 CEOs and top decision makers from 40 business sectors in Switzerland, Germany, and Austria in the fall of 2014. Using the results, we determined the ten most important criteria on which the BrandTrust Resilience Index® is built:

  1. Price-Premium
  2. Volume-Premium
  3. Brand-Advocacy
  4. Employee pride
  5. Sustainability
  6. Adaptability
  7. Awareness
  8. Indispensability
  9. Brand experience excellence
  10. Social relevance

These criteria went on to serve as a basis for several studies: In 2015, a total of 20,000 customers and buyers were surveyed on the resilience of 223 brands – of them around 5,600 customers and 65 leading brands from 14 market segments in Switzerland. These brands were selected not only on the merits of their brand strength. Additional important criteria were factors like sustainability and price premium. The study was led by Jürgen Gietl, Managing Partner at BrandTrust.

Further study results: You would like to find out more about the brand resilience study? We will be glad to provide you with more detailed information. Your contact:

Jürgen Gietl
Managing Partner Brand Trust GmbH
Email: juergen.gietl@brand-trust.de

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