The Charisma Index 2019

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  • Keith Wells

Another perspective on 'innovation'...


Which would you say is the most innovative brand? Which would be top of your list for 'being a leader, not a follower'? In our Charisma Index research study, we group these ideas under the heading of 'Courage'. And, for the third year running, LEGO has been voted top. Ahead of Apple, Amazon, Samsung, and all the rest.


One of the most striking factors in these findings is those brands' scores on the other dimensions. Especially what we call 'Consciousness' (the understanding brands show of consumers' needs, and their ability to respond to them) and then 'Delivery' (how good brands are at keeping their promises and not letting people down). If that triangle is out of kilter, something must be wrong: if brands are not understanding what their consumers really want, how can they innovate properly? And if they're seen to be letting people down, where has that innovation taken them?


Apple, for example, rates slightly higher than Samsung on Courage, but significantly lower on both Consciousness and Delivery. (And, in fact, on all the other dimensions.) Facebook's highest rating is for Courage, but performs so badly on all six definitions, that it ends up second-bottom of the whole survey. (Interestingly, its 'Courage' score is lower than the study's global average.) Tesla is even more extreme: it has a clear spike for its Courage, but that is set against an even sharper decline for Consciousness and Delivery.


Overall, the study shows just how people believe that brands are still really out for themselves, and have the wrong balance between their 'dynamic' and 'ethical' qualities. Looking behind the current numbers of apparent success, there are some inconvenient truths lurking about brands' relationships with their consumers, and their long-term prospects.

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