Top 10 Marketing Trends in 2013

Millward Brown has just released their 2013 annual list of the 100 most valuable brands globally, along with a detailed report on trends.

Eight of the top ten brands are household names in South Africa, and six of these top ten are technology and telecommunications brands.  But the trends and insights that the research reveals are much more interesting.

Of course technology is critical, and feeds into lifestyle on every level. The divide between work and personal life is becoming blurred as we have instant access to work emails on mobile devices, and the internet and social media are available at any time.  Advertising messages are no longer limited to traditional time slots, with interaction with clients, for both consumer and business to business marketers, happening at all times of the day.

Consumers are also becoming increasingly discriminating and demanding.  Access to information means that they are sharing knowledge and experience and, in many instances, market share is aligning to corporate reputation.   Brand loyalty exists across a growing repertoire of brands and marketers need to ensure that they communicate with their target market wherever the target market is.  This, unsurprisingly, is linked to the growth of social media marketing and content marketing.

As always, it is the brands without a clear brand positioning that are at risk. While top end products like Apple are holding their own, and economy/ value brands can offer their consumers (or business to business clients) a reason to down-trade, those without a well-defined value proposition are being squeezed.

Top Ten Brand Influencers

  1. Technology is a life force
  2. Life is blended
  3. Location is not important
  4. Consumers expect what they’ve paid for—and maybe a bit more
  5. Customers expect the experience that a brand promises to be executed flawlessly across categories
  6. Brands are becoming media
  7. The role of reputation is rising
  8. Presence in fast growing markets is imperative for global brands
  9. The middle gets squeezed
  10. The individual is the expert


Top Ten Brands (by Value)

Apple logo



$185.1 billion


google logo


$115.6 billion


IBM logo


$112.5 billion


McDonalds logo
$90.3 billion



Coca cola logo
$78.4 billion


at&t logo


$75.5 billion



Microsoft logo
$69.8 billion


Marboro logo
$69.4 billion



Visa logo


China Mobile logo



$55.4 billion


If you’d like more details, you can download a copy of the full report here.

Related articles:
Social media is a marketing decision
How to avoid online obscurity
The hard facts about internet usage and social media in South Africa today



  1. Rina Van Der Berg on August 6, 2013 at 15:40

    Very interesting article, with Apple number 1, it just proves that all markets are moving to “M-Commerce” (mobile). All sites have to be mobile friendly.

  2. Rajeev on June 6, 2013 at 10:38

    The title of the article is misleading. No REAL mention of the trends here with a link to the actual report.

    • Ann Druce on June 6, 2013 at 10:56

      Hi Rajeev

      I’m sorry that this disappointed you, but I don’t agree that the title is misleading. Since I linked to the full report, I didn’t see any value in going into a detailed analysis of the 10 trends listed, opting instead for a general introduction, highlighting some of the key points. I did consider the alternative of providing my own analysis of the trends, but decided there was little point, as the report did a good job of that.

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