Three Ways Leading BRI Brands Stay Top of Mind for Consumers
Three things head brands do well to fulfill consumers’ fundamental needs and become an everyday go-to
Each year Prophet asks more than 13,500 U.S. consumers about the brands that matter most in their lives. We codify our findings in the Prophet Brand Relevance Index® (BRI), a tool to help companies understand the significance of relevance and how it can be harnessed to unlock growth. The 2022 BRI revealed the highly coveted group of relentlessly relevant standouts—brands that resonate by appealing directly to our heads and hearts.
But some brands stand out because they appeal to our practical nature above all else. They’re the brands we rely on day after day—to help us problem solve, check off our to-do lists and keep our lives running smoothly. Brands that rank highly in our head category build relevance with consumers by reinforcing promises with performance and enabling autonomy.
In addition to our overall BRI ranking, we have identified the top brands that speak directly to consumers’ heads.
While top performers among head rankings excel at making the best products, delivering consistent experiences, and meeting important needs, among other attributes, we discovered three additional things head brands do exceptionally well to fulfill consumers’ fundamental needs and become an everyday go-to.
1. Pursue Partnerships with Industry Leaders
Top-performing head brands reinforce their positioning as a trustworthy, reliable solution by pursuing authentic partnerships with leaders in the space. Zelle (#9 in head rankings) enables easy, real-time transfers between hundreds of trusted yet “traditional” banks that have yet to get on the digital bandwagon. The Costco Next (#24 in head rankings) loyalty program allows members to purchase products directly from “hand-picked” suppliers. Brands like these take steps to surround themselves with trusted organizations and consequently appear legitimate to consumers when guaranteeing a job well done.
Clorox (#65 in overall BRI rankings, #14 in head rankings) does this especially well. The leading cleaning brand appealed to consumers as a necessity for keeping our homes clean and safe early during the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite already offering household products with medical-grade certifications, the brand seized the opportunity to partner with hospital systems to stock their inventories and pledged multi-million-dollar donations to those working on the front lines. These extra steps helped position a brand already known for quality cleaning products as an active part of the solution. Clorox successfully bridged the gap between health and wellness and household maintenance, becoming a fixture in under-the-sink cabinets across the nation.
2. Simplify Complex Tasks
High-ranking head brands provide clear, easy solutions to complicated problems, giving consumers a sense of control and ownership. They understand daily errands can be time-consuming, confusing
, and frustrating. So, they tackle these common tasks with enthusiasm—providing streamlined, accessible, convenient, customizable experiences, to keep things functioning. While brands like InstantPot, Tide , and CashApp have reinvented the way we cook, do laundry , and split the bill, one brand stood out for its ability to make one of the least flashy annual to-dos somewhat enjoyable.
Filing taxes–it’s one of the most important interactions we have with the government each year, and yet it often leaves consumers feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and frankly, bored. Yet, enter TurboTax (#70 in BRI Rankings, #7 in head rankings), a tax preparation software that has succeeded because it was the first to solve such a tedious process, streamlining the many stages of filing traditional paper tax returns. TurboTax’s software relies on a recall method, prompting users at each step of the process to claim additional deductions or list additional work, eliminating human error associated with the process. Its partnerships with top investment brands and banks also mean consumers’ information can securely and automatically be uploaded into the return, with the click of a button. Customers can even input documents on their own time, as opposed to setting up a meeting with a traditional accountant. These innovative fixes help TurboTax remain relevant as the best-selling tax preparation software and take some of the sting out of filing taxes, which consumers are greatly appreciative of.
3. Raise the Standard by Defining Your Own Grade of Excellence
Many highly-rated head brands design trademarkable technologies to integrate with all their products. These brands underpin dependability with high-performing, trademarked technology and consequently reinforce their reputations as trustworthy, reliable options by championing it. Unsurprisingly, many automotive brands appear among BRI rankings– Tesla, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Honda—no matter how luxurious or basic, eco-friendly or gas-guzzling, cars are an integral part of life. At any point in time, they can be filled with kids, groceries, suitcases, camping gear, moving boxes, empty coffee cups
, and memories. So, we rely on them to get us from A to B as safely as possible.
Toyota (#23 in BRI rankings, #16 in head rankings), known for manufacturing top-notch vehicles with reliable performance, positions its cars as “built to last, created to perform and designed for life.” Similarly, Honda (#30 in BRI rankings, #22 in head rankings) rose to the top of the head category due to its cars’ long-term dependability. With products that consistently rank among the best energy-efficient options, rarely break down, and consider safety from the beginning, the brands could solely rely on their performance to make sales. Instead, both brands continue to innovate new driver-assistive technology and redefine safety standards with ownable, pervasive technology. Trademarked Toyota Safety Sense™ technology is standard on all new models, to complement its already award-winning built-in safety features. The Honda Sensing® suite boasts modernized safety and driver-assistive technologies featured in a range of its vehicles. So, when it comes to making a smart investment, consumers turn to the cars they know uphold the highest standards—even if those standards were set by the brands.
What Lessons Can We Learn from Leading Head Brands?
To go from an amenity to a necessity and build relevance in the daily lives of consumers, brands need to:
- Pursue partnerships with top leaders in the space to demonstrate your commitment and expertise
- Find a way to simplify complex tasks—prioritize user experience and service design when creating your offerings to ensure consumers can use your products easily or quickly
- Whether it’s messaging around a new technology or suite of offerings, continue to raise standards of reliability, performance, and experience, and find a way to talk about (or trademark) it that’s unique to the brand
Want to learn more about how the most relevant brands are tapping into the head and heart of consumers? The Prophet BRI serves as a roadmap for building relevance with consumers. Contact our team to learn how to apply the insights from the 2022 Index to your organization.