March 20, 2015 Last Updated 11:06 am

Study by The Business Journals cites Apple as top rated business brand

Press Release:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – March 20, 2015 — The Business Journals today announced Apple as the top rated business brand as part of its thirteenth annual SMB Insights Study. The extensive nationwide survey among small and mid-sized business (SMB) owners measured their awareness, impressions and usage of over 250 brands. Apple regained the top position beating out last year’s victor, Amazon.com, who came in third this year following second place winner, Southwest airlines.

“The information we have confirms critical price-of-entry characteristics, opportunities for differentiation, as well as ideas for hard hitting tactics.”

In addition to identifying Apple as the overall brand winner, the study identified the most highly rated brands across six business categories:

Business Services: Citrix GoToMeeting
Communications: Verizon
Financial/Insurance: Fidelity Investments
Retail: Staples
Technology: Apple
Travel: Southwest Airlines

Over 1,600 SMB owners and top management decision makers participated in The Business Journals’ proprietary study, which has been conducted annually since 2002. Winning companies are those identified as best meeting the needs of small and mid-sized business owners, based on a their ratings of the brands across the following criteria: “Easy to do business with,” “Industry leader,” “Forward thinking-has a vision,” “For growing companies,” “Behaves ethically,” “Growing in popularity,” and “Has a good price for what you get.”

In addition to the study’s findings about brand equity, this year’s survey examined the purchasing dynamics of the SMB market across fifteen product categories, ranging from finance and insurance to the travel industry. For the first time, the study investigated the key drivers behind brand switching, the frequency of switching, and the timeframe of the purchase decision-making process. Interestingly, the frequency of switching was found to fluctuate dramatically across industries providing important insight into the volatility and loyalty parameters at work within each category.

“The net effect is highly actionable information and insights for marketers looking to enhance their brand and communications strategies,” said Whitney Shaw, President and CEO of American City Business Journals, parent company of The Business Journals. “The information we have confirms critical price-of-entry characteristics, opportunities for differentiation, as well as ideas for hard hitting tactics.”

For more information regarding The Business Journals proprietary brand study, please contact Jessie Shaw, VP of Research, 212-500-0611 (jessieshaw@bizjournals.com), @SMBInsights.

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