We asked 75,000 people to name their favorite brand. Here's what they said.

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When we provide a Valuegraphics Profile of a target audience for a client, we can tell them exactly, scientifically, what that target audience wants, and what will motivate them the most. How? Because the Valuegraphics Database contains responses to questions about 40 core human values, and 340 other questions about all aspects of life. That's 380 variables that help us detect what an audience for anything really cares about. 

With all that data on hand, we find out some pretty cool things. This is one of them.

Brands are a big part of everyday life for all of us, like it or not. Some of the smartest people spend some of the biggest budgets on earth trying to influence us to like one brand over another.

While Valuegraphics Data throws outdated marketing practices under the bus (most notably, all forms of demographic stereotyping) it's still fascinating to see how brands rank when people are asked to list the ones they like best. It really does make me wonder how this list of the Top 50 Most Favorite Brands would be different if some or all of these companies embraced profiles based on values, instead of birthdays, but that's beside the point. 

Remember: this isn't just 75,000 people tossed in our database all willy-nilly: it's a random stratified statistical representation of the population of the USA and Canada, which simply means that any data we pull from the database is accurate with a 95% level of confidence and a +/- 3.5% margin of error, which is more rigorous than required for the research you might do for a PhD. This stuff is as accurate as it gets. 

We asked people to tell us their favorite brand. Just one. If they tried to game the system and give us more than one answer, we only used the first one they supplied. 

Some of the responses, once tabulated, were not a surprise. Apple was, of course, number one. Those folks at Apple own such a massive share-of-mind, and share-of-heart, if that's even a thing. 

I did, however, find a few things to be remarkably surprising.

First off, when you ask someone to tell you their favorite thing in any category of life, you expect it would be something that has a lovability factor, wouldn't you?

I mean no one would tell you that their favorite food is flour. Yet there are some brands in this Top 50 list that are so dull that I'm dead curious about how they earned favorite status with enough people to make this list. 

For example, AT&T, a phone company, ranked 42nd. That puts them ahead of Kraft, Revlon and Gatorade. How can you love a phone company that much?

And Colgate? No disrespect to the fine people in the Colgate marketing department, but who are all these people who love their toothpaste more than Netflix, Tesla, and Ralph Lauren? A lot of people do. 

Another head scratcher for me: how does a brand like Nescafe, the maker of instant coffee crystals, outrank BMW and Chevrolet? Think of all the money and resources that BMW and Chevrolet have spent over decades trying to build brand loyalty and make themselves lovable, yet they are 24th and 28th on the list to Nescafe's 21st place showing. Instant coffee is more popular than Chevrolet. Go figure. 

Enough editorializing from me. Without further ado, here are The Top 50 Favorite Brands in the USA and Canada, in order of popularity. 

  1. Apple

  2. Hershey's

  3. Amazon

  4. Google

  5. Coca-Cola

  6. Samsung

  7. McDonald's

  8. Nike

  9. Pepsi

  10. M&Ms

  11. Microsoft/Windows

  12. Budweiser

  13. Disney

  14. Starbucks

  15. H&M

  16. Toyota

  17. Facebook

  18. Mercedes

  19. Gillette

  20. Sony

  21. Nescafe

  22. Kelloggs

  23. Pampers

  24. BMW

  25. IBM

  26. HP

  27. KFC

  28. Chevrolet

  29. Betty Crocker

  30. Calvin Klein

  31. Heineken

  32. Johnson & Johnson

  33. Colgate

  34. Walmart

  35. Nestle

  36. YouTube

  37. Netflix

  38. Pillsbury

  39. Playboy

  40. Cisco

  41. Tesla

  42. AT&T

  43. Gatorade

  44. Lays

  45. Lux

  46. Sears

  47. Sunsilk

  48. Ralph Lauren

  49. Revlon

  50. Kraft