Kaizo releases consumer advocacy winners and losers

Category losers: Ryanair, British Airways, TMobile and SAP
• Category winners: Orange, 3, Danone and Symbian

London: July 29, 2008 – Orange was ranked the mobile category and overall winner in the Summer Kaizo Advocacy Index released today.
The Kaizo Advocacy Index measures the impact of online Word of Mouth, or the brand recommendability, of 20 major brands across four sectors. The bi-annual Index examines independent links on four Google search engine tools – Web, News, Groups and Blog. Content is assigned a positive (Promoter), neutral (Passive) or negative (Detractor) score and an index is created by subtracting the percentage of Promoters from the percentage of Detractors.

Orange, 3, Danone and Symbian rated strongly and were category winners in mobile, food and software respectively. Ryanair and British Airways reflected the poor performance experienced by the entire airline category, while TMobile and SAP were the Word of Mouth losers in the mobile and software categories.

The Kaizo Advocacy Index highlights how global corporate news can impact the online recommendability of a brand in the UK.
As in past Kaizo Advocacy Indexes, Del Monte and Heinz both suffered from negative online coverage, resulting from news around US labour issues. This indicates a need for more proactive UK-based news generation and online engagement from these companies.

“In today’s Web 2.0 world of information sharing and user-generated content, it’s easy for positive comments surrounding brands to get lost in the ocean of general, passive comments. This means that brands need to be more active online to ensure the balance remains positive, particularly when they are faced with significant industry issues,” said Rhodri Harries, managing director of Kaizo.

He continued: “Tailoring brand activity to online audiences is therefore becoming increasingly necessary, with a real need for Media Rich Content or Digital News Releases when distributing news to media; both traditional and social.”

Research from the London School of Economics shows that companies with above-average recommendability and below-average negative Word Of Mouth, grew four to five times faster than other companies. Not surprisingly, negative Word Of Mouth is more powerful than positive Word Of Mouth by a factor of three and a half times.

Kaizo advises organisations that Advocacy Index scores must be considered in relation to competitors’ scores rather than in isolation, or against companies in different sectors. Some sectors have broad Word of Mouth appeal – such as cars, beauty and travel – and have a higher average rating than sectors such as software which are more niche in their appeal.
However, within a sector the Index score is a clear sign about who will be in winning the ‘recommendation stakes’ in the immediate future. As such, it is a very effective benchmark for comparisons within sectors

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Kaizo is the winner of the inaugural Web 2.0 award from the Public Relations Consultants Association for its campaign with Simple (www.simplycity.co.uk).

 To read the full Kaizo Advocacy Index report please click here

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