As a result of globalisation and internationalisation, consumers are increasingly well-travelled, with their rising affluence contributing to a greater exposure and acceptance of Asian brands. Based on the consolidated research results, market dynamics have also changed significantly over the past three years, particularly across consumer tastes and preferences, brand dynamics and country-specific brands. Geographically, the rise and growth of Chinese brands in Singapore have been among the most notable developments, from little recognition and recall in previous years, to becoming well-known by many consumers in Singapore. Some of these brands have become sizeable players in their respective fields, ranging from smartphones (Huawei [65.7%], Oppo [34.5%]), financial services (Bank of China [66.2%]), e-commerce (Taobao [51.2%]) and airlines (China Eastern [39.3%]).
Southeast Asian brands, particularly those from Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand are also named, particularly in the F&B (PappaRich [62.3%], Thai Express [80.8%]), FMCG (Julie’s Biscuits [76.3%]) and commodities sectors showing the diversity of flavours and interest among Singaporeans. In line with previous years’ surveys, Hong Kong brands, namely Cathay Pacific Airways (77.1%) and Watsons (74.7%) continue to secure their leadership positions within the branding spectrum, with consumers viewing these brands in the highest esteem.
These results reveal that there is an evolution on consumers’ perception towards brands and their openness to embrace new brands regardless of their country of origin. The new generation of consumers are factoring a new set of considerations in their decision process including recommendations from trusted sources and brand credibility, alongside traditional considerations such as value for money and functionality. This is creating great opportunities for Chinese Brands to reposition themselves as the new generation of regional and global brands. The Influential Brands® logo represents a vote of consumer confidence and approval, as well as a testament to the years of efforts invested in brand building, management and maintenance.
The study showed that brands with high recall and favourability among consumers are united in their brand engagement approach. Where the variables are equal (for example, in the F&B categories: location, convenience and price), consumers gravitate towards brands that built brand presence and likability via channels of trust and products and marketing activities that meet their expectations. In categories with intense competition, brands with cross-generational appeal, for instance Old Chang Kee, BreadTalk and NTUC FairPrice ultimately top their categories.