Coca-Cola Is The "Best Brand," Microsoft Beats Apple

Coca-Cola has come out on top of the “Best Brands” Harris Poll for the first time ever. Sony, the leader for the past 7 years slipped to number 2.

Only 4 brands have lasted 10 years on the poll: Ford (which was No. 1 in 1997), Sony (which was No. 3), Coca-Cola (which was No. 7) and Pepsi Cola (which was No. 10).

How Does It Work?

Poll takers give “spontaneous answers” when asked the following question:

“We would like you to think about brands or names of products and services you know. Considering everything, which three brands do you consider the best?”

Consumers are not given a list of brands to choose from.

The Results:

Microsoft jumped into the top 10 this year at #8, beating Apple at #9. Apple was #10 last year, Microsoft wasn’t on the list. Dell slipped a few spots from #2 to land at #4.

Ford was the only American car manufacturer on the list, behind Toyota, but beating Honda. Honda slipped from #6 to #10. Toyota jumped up to grab the #3 spot from last year’s #4.

The top 10 brands for 2007 are:

1) Coca-Cola

2) Sony

3) Toyota

4) Dell

5) Ford

6) Kraft Foods

7) Pepsi

8) Microsoft

9) Apple

10) Honda

Coca Cola On Top For First Time In Annual ‘Best Brands’ Harris Poll (Press Release) [Business Wire]


Edit Your Comment

  1. CreativeLinks says:

    Shouldn’t this be the “Most Well Known Brands” as opposed to the “Best Brands”.

  2. dbeahn says:

    @CreativeLinks: That’s what makes a great brand. They aren’t commenting on the quality of the company or products, just the brand and marketing.

  3. Thrust says:

    Define “Best”. Maytag is a better brand than Ford when it comes to backing up their product. LG is a better brand than Sony based on sales for comparable items. Hell, if it’s best KNOWN, where in the nine hells is Bic?

  4. axiomatic says:

    Then Sony still fails the “best brand” as lately, in even the same day, Sony’s US CEO and Japan CEO constantly contradict each other. In fact, this whole year Sony has been putting their foot in their collective mouths at every press conference regarding the PS3 and SOE games. Also, Sony got in trouble twice with viral marketing this year as well.

  5. banned says:

    #1 in my books, always has been.

  6. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    Best – exceeding all others. Now can we have two hundred comments on how they “should have asked me” and “I think [redacted] should have been number one.”
    Polls are shit. The presidential election is one, and look what we ended up with last time :)

  7. pinkbunnyslippers says:

    Oh my gosh – I think we already had this argument in a previous thread — the one that dealt with the “best brands for 20-somethings”…or something along those lines.

    I think that in this situation, the “best brand” has little to do with its products, but moreso with its popularity, recognition, and saturation throughout the marketplace.

    So don’t go getting your panties all in a bunch if you think the “best” brand makes crappy products. That has nothing to do with it, otherwise this would be the “Best Products” list and not “Best Brands”

    Just my 2 cents…

  8. mathew says:

    Ford and Kraft Foods? They must have surveyed a lot of trailer parks.

  9. Notsewfast says:


    You’ve got it. It’s not that complicated. It’s a list of the companies with the best brand, that is, the company which has the best “branding”. Who do you recognise, feel comfortable with and see as a company that you respect.

    The firms on the list are succesful in their branding. Bic, the pen company, may have a pervasive product, but as a company, they tend to lie pretty low and would not be counted on this list.

  10. Thrust says:

    @Secret Agent Man: Um… Yes Bic pens are good and all, but Bic also makes the lighters all those smoke-monkies can’t live without.

  11. bnosach says:

    Really? Ask someone in foreign country if they know what Kraft Foods is and you’ll quickly realize why Americans like to say “World League” when it comes to their sports. What kind of egocentrism is that? Yeh, the Champions of the world, when no other team hasn’t been playing. Hilarious.

    I mean, assuming that your post says “Ford was the only American car manufacturer on the list”, the list is meant to be international, right?

    Anyway, the fact that brand #6 was included just makes me angry :)

  12. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    @mathew: How did I miss that one!!

  13. nequam says:

    @bnosach: Huh?

  14. bnosach says:

    There are a lot of well-known non-american brands, like BP, Nokia, etc. that (IMHO), should’ve been included in contrast to Kraft Foods.

  15. snowferret says:

    If the brands are chosen for them what’s the point?

  16. not_seth_brundle says:

    @Secret Agent Man: Agreed and well said. This is a poll whose results can’t really be challenged, since almost by definition the responses are correct. Most people think Coca-Cola is a top brand, ergo Coca-Cola has done a great job of branding.

    @bnosach: According to the press release, 2,372 U.S. adults were surveyed in this poll. I do not believe it was meant to be international. Toyota and Honda likely made the list because these brands are well-known to U.S. adults.

    @snowferret: The brands are not chosen for them. “Note: These are spontaneous replies. Respondents are not read or shown a list of brand names.”

  17. CreativeLinks says:

    @dbeahn: Brand Awareness does not necessarily make it the “best” brand. It is just those brands with the highest penetration.

    If I asked people to name a color, and the majority said Red. Does that mean Red is the “best” color? No, it would simply be the most popular, or well-known color.

    To find the best brands, the question should be posed “If you could have any car what would it be?”

    Or, “if you could have any soft drink, what would you want?”

    Those answers would then be the “best” brands, since they have the highest desire rates.

  18. nequam says:

    @bnosach: ditto what CREATIVELINKS said. You can’t argue with these results. Indeed, it appears your complaint is that BP, Nokia, etc. have not done as good a job of branding and marketing in the US as Kraft.

  19. r81984 says:

    This cannot really be the best brands list.

    Ford is terrible, GM is known more in the world than Ford.

    Also, WTF is up with Coca Cola, Pepsi is by far the better brand.

    Why is sony on the list, I think that last time anyone thought they were good was back in the early 90s, now everyone hates sony and most of their products, especially the vaio, are overpriced and made cheaper compared to other lower priced higher quality brands.

  20. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    @r81984: There would be just what I said before…”They didn’t ask me so this poll is shit.”
    Chances are, when someone tried to ask you, you were too busy or thought it was a telemarketing scam.

  21. FreakyStyley says:

    Are y’all just missing the point, or do you really not understand the concept of branding?

  22. Recury says:

    Why the hell does this have 500+ diggs? BRAND POLL, OMGAWESOME. Way to go, internet.

  23. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    @Recury: You don’t like it, shut your computer off and go outside. What do you expect, opera?

  24. zl9600 says:

    Anyone bother to look at Harris the company and their client list? Anyone? Hmmm… serving clients like MICROSOFT.

    This list has come out year after year and SHOCK! it’s always been laughed at by everyone except for the mid-level marketing managers at companies who are on the list so they can brag. And they are usually clients of Harris. And Interbrand does the same thing.

    Anyone think this is statistically important?


  25. Transuranic says:

    Reasons Why I Love Each of The Ten “Best” Brands:

    1. Coke: High Fructose Corn Syrup slowly killing off your poorer customers (i.e. most of them)
    2. Sony: Rootkit, obvs
    3. Toyota… uh, I’ve got zero bad to say here. Doesn’t build enough hybrids?
    4. Dell: uh-mazing service
    5. Ford: American car company. Nuff said.
    6. Kraft Foods: do you produce anything without high fructose corn poison? doubt it.
    7. Pepsi: see Coke
    8. Microsoft: Vista’s SP1 due in 2009! Maybe.
    9. Apple: wait, I don’t get laid by hot geeks because I bought stuff at the Genius Bar? Ubun-what?
    10. Honda: again, besides the fact that they don’t produce *strictly* hybrids… I got nothin.