How would the top 10 overall favourite brands perform if #TopBrands2013 included social media elements?

eNitiate | Sunday Times Top Brands | 2013

The annual Sunday Times Top Brands 2013 Survey was published yesterday.

As I was trolling through the various categories of the survey, I could not help but wonder how inclusion of certain social media elements would alter some of the results.

This lead to this post.

Using results of the Grand Prix Top 10 Overall Favourite Brands, shown in the graph below, I included engagement-related social media elements and came up with interesting findings that I share in this post.

Table of Contents

Grand Prix – Overall Favourite Brand Results  

Here are the results:

<img src=

Graph 1

Using Twitter as a proxy, I analysed social media presence of the brands above, aided by a set of 4 questions here below.

Do the top 10 overall favourite brands have local Twitter handles?

All the top 10 overall favourite brands are found in more than one geographic market, regardless of their origin. 

I checked whether they (the brands) engage with South African social netizens directly, and this would be through owning South African (alternatively called local) Twitter handles. 

The rationale is that each geographic region has its own unique circumstances, such as the economy and nuanced consumption behaviours, which do impact brand experience and resultant style of engagement on social media.

A local Twitter handle analysis provided the following results:

<img src=

Table 1

The table above shows that 8 of the top 10 brands have local Twitter handles. 

The remaining brands – Koo and Sunlight – do not have Twitter handles at all. 

Further analysis of these brands led me to the conclusion that the mega FMCG companies owning them – Tiger Brands and Unilever respectively – deliberately decided against putting them on social media, given that other brands owned by these 2 giants (Tastic Rice and Doves respectively) do have social network accounts.


Top 4 South African fan pages have a share of Facebook’s largest market – the US

Coca-Cola’s local Twitter handle – @Coke_ZA – was  used only in 2010, and this was specifically for Fifa Soccer World Cup

It appears as though the social media policy of the global top brand is very selective when it comes to regional social network accounts, given that the only other local Twitter handles on the African continent are Coca-Cola Nigeria and Coca-Cola Tunisia.

The remainder of this post provides detailed analysis of the 7 overall favourite brands with active local Twitter handles.

How active are the selected overall favourite brands on Twitter?

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Graph 2

As the graph shows, Pick n Pay is the most active top 10 overall favourite brand on Twitter. 

Lucky star and Shoprite are still getting the hang of Twitter, given that their handles were registered only recently (see Table 1). 

While it is surprising that Shoprite appears to be hopping on the Twitter bandwagon only now when compared to Pick n Pay, Lucky Star is a brand to watch given the observed enthusiastic tweeting behaviour.


Putting Kaizer Chiefs #OperationVatAlles to the test – on social media

Tastic Rice’s daily posting rate is noticeably low, given this brand’s Twitter handle that is more than 18 months old. 

With Tastic having been around for more than half a century and been the toast of special family meals for all this time, my intuition says that this brand would have great stories to share on Twitter as it does on offline media. 

Thus, I cannot understand why there is such muted tweeting activity, but I shall resist the temptation to speculate.

How socially engaged are the selected overall favourite brands on Twitter?

Social engagement score is calculated using eNitiate‘s formula that is based on Twitter Replies, RT’s and Mentions. 

Brands that use their Twitter handles for CRM tend to have a higher contribution of Replies in their tweets, and this results in a higher engagement score.

The 7 overall favourite brands with local Twitter handles have the following engagement scores:

<img src=

Graph 3

Pick n Pay, the most active top 10 overall favourite brand on Twitter, is also the most engaged. 

As explained above, this clearly indicates that Pick n Pay uses Twitter mainly for CRM purposes. 

Not too much should be read into Shoprite’s score at this stage, given the brand’s 1 month old Twitter handle.

Which overall favourite brand has the highest social influence on Twitter?

Here are the social influence scores of the 7 overall favourite brands with local Twitter handles:

<img src=

Graph 4

A Twitter social influence score measures the extent to which a brand’s followers react positively to its tweets. 

I used a tool called Klout to work out the social influence scores in Graph 4.

The higher the score, the more influential the brand is. 

Notice that Shoprite and Lucky Star do not appear in the Social Influence graph, and this is because their local Twitter handles are still relatively new (see Top 10 overall favourite brand 2013 Twitter table).

Samsung is the second least socially engaged overall favourite brand (Social Engagement Score graph), but it has the highest social influence score. 

Pick n Pay, the most active top 10 overall favourite brand that is also most engaged, has the second highest Klout score.

Summary outcomes

If social media presence, engagement and influence elements were included in the annual Top 10 Overall Favourite Brands Survey, the outcome would have been different especially for Coca-Cola, Koo, Sunlight and Pick n Pay.

Have you got thoughts about inclusion of social media elements in the annual Sunday Times Top Brands Survey? Share them in the Comments section here below.

How active are the selected overall favourite brands on Twitter?

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