The FutureBrand Index 2020

The FutureBrand Index is a global brand perception study based on the PwC Global Top 100 Companies by market capitalisation. Now in its sixth year and fifth iteration, our ranking re-orders the Top 100 in terms of brand perception strength, rather than just financial strength, offering the only rigorous assessment of how future proof the world’s most prominent companies are.

Results are often surprising. In previous years, the FutureBrand Index has demonstrated that well-perceived companies are those that are best able to consistently align the totality of the experiences they create with their wider corporate purpose. These companies have a measurable competitive advantage because more people want to buy from, pay more and work for them. Above all, the companies with the strongest current financial strength are not necessarily best placed to grow in the future.

What’s new and what’s important in the FutureBrand Index 2020

1. The biggest threats to businesses

    At a time when it’s virtually impossible to plan from one week to the next, threats to success (and, let’s face it, survival) are myriad. But our data, collated during lockdown, reveals the key perceptions when it comes to future prosperity. In line with our understanding of the seismic shifts in the way companies work and how their clients perceive them, it is hardly surprising that the number one threat to future success is changing consumer tastes and expectations.

    Furthermore, given our findings on the outperforming brands which have embraced technological advances, the number two threat – tech adoption and integration – falls in line with our data. Then there’s number three, corporate reputation and trust. Once again, our sector conclusions marry up with this central issue.

    2. Resilience

      Resilience is all, especially during a worldwide crisis. Our research partner, QRi, noted five key drivers for resilience: authenticity, premium, thought leadership, mission, innovation.

      3. Reasons to want to work for a company

        Why would you want to work for a particular company? Our research shows that the main reasons are:

        • They produce premium products and services that people value

        • They employ quality people

        • They provide inspiration for change

        • They have impressive thought leadership which includes strong ideas and principles

        • There’s an emotional attachment to a trusted company

        • The company respects and enhances lives

          4. Reasons to want to buy products and services from a company

          With a myriad of brands selling an incalculable number of products and services, what are the main reasons for wanting to purchase what they have to offer?

          • Creates genuinely useful innovations

          • Produces premium products and services that people value

          • Respects and enhances lives

          • Emotional attachment – a trusted company

          • Has a credible authentic vision

          • Thought leadership – has strong ideas and principles

            5. What makes a great CEO

            In a time of individuality, personality and forging of new paths, it appears that we are also in an era which celebrates good leadership with a clear vision as well as a CEO who can foster a harmonious and happy workplace. Our respondents wanted (or at least claim to want) a brand spearheaded by someone who puts people ahead of profits and isn’t afraid to prioritise integrity over shareholder profits.

            To see the full 100, download the FutureBrand Index 2020.

            Previous FBI reports

            The FutureBrand Index 2016
            The FutureBrand Index 2018