Retail's 6 Least Respected Brands

Tenet Partners, a leading brand innovation and marketing firm, ranked The Most and Least Respected Corporate Brands of 2015 in its annual report. For the third consecutive year, The Coca-Cola Company tops the list of most respected brands, while six retailers were among the least respected brands according to the report.

Tenet surveyed approximately 10,000 business decision-makers and opinion elites on two key metrics that contribute to a brand’s ability to drive long-term growth: Familiarity and Favorability. Brands with the highest familiarity and favorability are defined as most respected, while brands that are the most well-known but have the lowest favorability are considered the least respected.

Respondents were considered to be familiar with a brand if they stated that they know more than just the company name. Familiarity scores range from 0 to 100. Respondents familiar with a corporation are then asked about three dimensions that together form the 0 to 100 favorability score. The three dimensions include: overall reputation, perception of management, and investment potential.

The entire report is available here. And a quick look at the least respected retail brands according to the report follows.

Big Lots. Big Lots maintained its least respected status from 2014, retaining its previous rank of third least respected from last year. Big Lots is the least respected retail brand on the list although it has been steadily improving its favorability — all three metrics that make up the metric have been increasing over the past five years.

Rite Aid. The drug store chain made headlines last week when it was announced that it will be acquired by Walgreens in a $17-billion-plus deal. As one of two pharmacy chains on the least respected list, the public clearly has high expectations of the segment that are not being met.

JCPenney. The department store chain registered a seventh place finish in the least respected category for the third consecutive year. According to the report, perception of management is steadily improving, but consumer and investors are still wary of the brand's ability to rebound.

Best Buy. Despite the resurgence the retailer has enjoyed under the guidance of CEO Hubery Joly, the electronic giant still finds itself on this dubious list. It improved three positions from last year's report, finishing as the eighth least respected this year. The company’s improved performance can be attributed largely to its perception of management score, which jumped an impressive 11.8 points since 2010 and 2 points year-over-year.

Foot Locker. After a one-year hiatus from this ranking Foot Locker has returned to the least respected report. The company’s favorability score decreased by .6 year-over-year with overall reputation declining a significant 3.2 points.

CVS Health. The retail pharmacy finished as the 10th least respected brand, just missing being left off of the list. Over the past five years the retailer has experienced sharp declines across each of the three attributes of favorability, with overall reputation and investment potential failing 11.7 and 8.5 points respectively.
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