According to a survey released by the Peter B. Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria, Canadians trust homegrown brands the most; Tim Hortons, President’s Choice, and Shoppers Drug Mart topped the list in their Gustavson Brand Trust Index.
Over the course of the survey, a sample of 3,125 Canadian consumers ranked a total of 249 brands in 22 industries. The brands were scored on 40 attributes, including quality, innovation, value, leadership and social responsibility, which are considered to be the most relevant factors influencing consumer trust.
The study found that consumers trust on two different levels: functional and emotional. Trust of the former variety comes from quality, reliability, and consistency, while the latter is based in an alignment of values between the company and the consumer. According to the index, these dynamics greatly influence consumers’ choices when choosing between brands.
Saul Klein, the dean of the business school, says the study was conducted in response to a recent survey by global PR firm Edelman, which found that Canadians are losing trust in retail companies. “That’s a key part of what we were looking at – why overall trust is going down, why some brands are performing poorly but others are doing well,” says Klein. “The idea is to focus on the ones doing well to understand why.” CJ