Research Shows One Key to Market Relevancy is Brand Reinvention

Brands in Technology, Food & Beverage Categories Lead the Way in Staying Relevant

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Toronto, ON – Coca-Cola. Tim Hortons. Blackberry. What do these three brands have in common? According to recent research conducted by Ipsos Reid, they are all companies that Canadians believe are in the process of trying to reinvent themselves. The survey also reveals that almost eight-in-ten (78%) Canadians agree that companies or brands are able to reinvent themselves, while two-in-ten (22%) describe it as a difficult or impossible thing to do.

These findings match their own perspectives on personal reinvention, with four-in-ten Canadians saying they have reinvented themselves at some point during their lives, and another three-in-ten thinking about doing so in the future.

“Consumers are constantly reinventing themselves: how they look, what they value, where they live, or what they do for work. As such, they expect brands to also experiment, change and grow with them,” says Steve Levy, COO with Ipsos Reid.

Which brands do Canadians feel have successfully reinvented themselves in the past? According to the findings, the brands mentioned the most include Coca-Cola, Apple and McDonald’s followed by IBM, and the big three American car companies – Ford, General Motors and Chrysler.

“These brands have proven it can be done. Canadians hungered for healthier choices, and McDonald’s tapped into this desire by revitalizing its menu and advertising. Similarly, Coca-Cola took a cue from consumers and focused on products that help address the obesity issue in this country. Apple reached a new audience by entering the communications and content business, and IBM abandoned its core business model and transitioned to a service company,” adds Levy.

In the study, Ipsos Reid also explored which brands Canadians feel are currently in the process of trying to reinvent themselves. The data reveal that Canadians give credit to Coca-Cola, ING / Tangerine, McDonald’s and Tim Hortons. But the brand that was mentioned most for currently attempting to reinvent itself is Blackberry.

To better understand what defines brand reinvention versus minor change, Ipsos Reid gave Canadians a number of circumstances to assess. If a brand offers a new line of products that is completely different to what they already offer, 67% view it as reinvention. If a brand changes what it ‘stands’ for, 60% see it as reinvention. In contrast, changing packaging size (51%) or changing the logo on a label (49%) are much more likely seen as a minor changes than reinvention.

“Sooner or later every company will experience some kind of disruption. Technology will change. Consumer needs will change. And new competitors will raise the bar. So brands need to stay relevant by reinventing. It may not be easy, but it is becoming a business imperative,” concludes Levy.

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted between August 22nd and 28th, 2014. For this survey, a sample of 1,378 Canadians was drawn at random from the Ipsos Opinions panel in Canada. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the Canadian household population according to Statistics Canada census data and to provide results intended to approximate the entire population. As this study was English only, proportions were set by re-basing regional populations. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within +/- 3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all English-speaking Canadians been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release please contact:

Elen Alexov
Director, Marketing Services
Ipsos in North America
(778) 373-5136

About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. Ipsos ranks third in the global research industry.

With offices in 86 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across six research specializations: advertising, customer loyalty, marketing, media, public affairs research, and survey management.

Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,712,4 million (2 274 M$) in 2013.

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Research Shows One Key to Market Relevancy is Brand Reinvention


Elen Alexov
Director, Marketing Services,
North America