Michelin has returned to the top of our annual online brand equity study run in conjunction with Cambridge-based specialists NetNames. The results marks a return to fortunes for the French global player, which has dominated the research for most of the 12 years it has been running until Continental seized first position last year. Indeed, the research has only been topped by three of the tyre majors in its history – Michelin, Continental and Pirelli. However, while the top of the table has been dominated by a select few of the world’s largest tyre manufacturers, some of the biggest gains have been made at the opposite end of the spectrum where the mid-range and economy brands we study have some of the biggest gains.
Our 2015 online branding study, which measures the online branding of leading tyre firms in partnership with NetNames, has a new winner. After years of Michelin dominance across both the “prominence” and “sentiment” metrics NetNames measures, Continental has surged to victory in the sentiment part of the 2015 survey, overtaking Michelin for the lead and just a whisker behind in terms of prominence.
French manufacturer Michelin has won our global online tyre brand value rankings for the seventh consecutive year. However, while Michelin deserves credit for the unparalleled achievement. This year’s research also shows significant growth from Korean manufacturers/mid-range brands. Tyres & Accessories once again partnered with NetNames, a partnership that this year celebrates its 10th set of annual results and 10 years of assessing tyre brands’ online prominence and sentiment.
What’s in a name? Keeping a good name means as much in business as in life. When it comes to online marketing it arguably means even more. For the last nine years Tyres & Accessories has surveyed the prominence and sentiment of tyre brand names in the online world. We’re not experts in the very specialist and highly technical research field so we have spent all this time partnering with a company in silicon fen, which knows a whole lot more about this than we do. Previously our research partners were known as Envisional, but in the year since our last report the company has re-branded itself as NetNames. Nevertheless it is the same system and therefore it continues to be comparable with our data archive.
Whatever happens in the wider economy and even in the tyre market in particular it seems that being strong helps you stay strong when it comes to online branding. Throughout the last eight annual surveys of the online prominence and sentiment of leading tyre brands one thing has stayed the same. Michelin has always come top in terms of prominence and has been beaten only by Pirelli on two occasions (2005 and 2006). Furthermore the top six places are seemingly impenetrable to those seeking to build their brands online, with the same handful of companies trading positions with each other but some way off of the rest of the pack in terms of prominence. However, there are always surprises and 2012’s survey is no different.
The French tyre giant has done it again. As in all the previous online brand equity studies produced by Tyres & Accessories in collaboration with online brand research specialists Envisional, the 2011 data once again shows that Michelin has achieved the greatest degree of online prominence. What’s different this year is that the margin has somewhat decreased compared with the identical study we produced in 2010. The companies occupying the remainder of the top six most-prominent brand slots all come from the same selection as before (namely Michelin, Continental, Pirelli, Bridgestone, Goodyear and Dunlop) but, this time Pirelli rose from sixth place in 2010 to third place in 2011, and Bridgestone dropped from second to fourth place. According to the analysis there was a significant drop in relative prominence between the top six brands and the remainder, amongst which small drops in position were seen for Firestone (dropping below Yokohama) and Falken (dropping below Hankook). Giti achieved the smallest degree of online prominence by a significant margin.
Michelin has topped Tyres & Accessories’ exclusive online brand prominence rankings for the sixth consecutive year, totting up a record high score as it went. In our second online brand equity measurement – sentiment – compiled in association with the artificial intelligence experts at Cambridge-based Envisional, Michelin won-out for the third year on the trot, demonstrating the firms continuing dominance in this field too. The Envisional analysis into online appearances or “mentions” of 17 major tyre brands, followed identical studies (looking at 12 of these brands) carried out in September 2005, August 2006, July 2007, October 2008 and September 2009. The major difference this time round is that the 2010 report also includes five up-and-coming brands produced in the Far East and while the data shows that they have a way to go before they will be giving their premium competitors a run for their money, certainly as far as online marketing is concerned.
The latest Tyres & Accessories online brand equity survey analysis shows that, for the fifth straight year, Michelin is the most prominent online tyre brand by a significant margin. Michelin also came top in the sentiment index, which deducts negative mentions from the overall total. Despite it being the third year running that Michelin has attained the position of being both the most positively-referenced brand and the most prominent brand overall, it is worth noting that the margin of its lead has somewhat decreased compared with 2008. The top six most prominent brands remain the same as observed in the past four years, though with Dunlop dropping from third place in 2008 to fifth place in 2009. There remains a significant drop in relative prominence between the top six brands and the remainder, with the rankings of the bottom three brands remaining unchanged.
Michelin is once again the leading tyre brand on the internet, according to research conducted by online analysts Envisional. The unique online brand ranking exercise, which has been published exclusively in association with Tyres & Accessories since 2005, also found that Pirelli was the biggest faller and that the gap between premium and following brands is widening. The Michelin brand retains the top spot from the 2007 report and has performed strongly online since the first tyre branding analysis in 2005 when it came third. The 2008 report shows the French manufacturer’s strongly positive ‘sentiment’ score kept it right out in front this year, though Dunlop (climbing from third to second) and the strongly improving Goodyear (up from sixth to third) also turned in good performances. Bridgestone will not be so happy, having lost ground a little and dropped down the sentiment rankings from second to fourth place.
Michelin and Bridgestone are the dominant online tyre brands, according to the latest research. The report, exclusively published in Tyres & Accessories for the last three years, was conducted by Cambridge-based online brand monitoring specialists, Envisional and found that Pirelli was the biggest faller in its unique online brand ranking exercise. The analysis shows that the Michelin brand, as observed in previous years, continues to stand well clear of its rivals. Envisional found that this brand achieves the greatest degree of “online prominence” by a significant margin, though this lead has narrowed again since 2006. The top six most prominent brands are the same as those observed in 2005 and 2006 and there is still a sharp drop between the six leaders and the chasing pack.
Following Tyres & Accessories’ pioneering publication of online tyre brand penetration rankings last year, T&A has again enlisted the assistance of Cambridge-based e-marketing specialists Envisional. The report exclusively published in this month’s magazine shows some marked changes in the relatively short time since the 2005 survey. While Michelin remained top of the virtual pile in terms of quantity, Pirelli beat the French tyre giant in terms of the quality of references to the brand. Goodyear and Dunlop showed that the two brands’ marketing investments have paid off. They remained relatively flat in terms of prominence, but made sharp improvements in terms of sentiment. In this respect (see magazine for sentiment chart) Dunlop jumped from fifth to second place overall, while Goodyear rose from sixth to fourth. Continental took the largest hit of the premium manufacturers, falling from third to sixth on the sentiment index. Interestingly, Uniroyal achieved the lowest number of negative references overall.
Certain big names like Microsoft and IBM might be synonymous with information technology, but what about tyre brands? Which ones are the most powerful online and why? Tyres & Accessories asked Internet analysts Envisional to delve deeper into the fast moving world of e-marketing to exclusively produce the following rankings.