Walmart has been crowned the least collaborative company in America by nearly one in five Americans, followed by other major brands including Apple, McDonalds and Ikea.
The findings are revealed in our 2014 Customer Collaboration Report, as we commissioned YouGov to poll the views of a representative sample of 1,220 American adults. Despite the lack of collaboration consumers feel they have with brands, there is an appetite to engage with these companies. Half of Americans actually hold a better perception of brands that allow them to collaborate online.
Top Brands Are Failing to Effectively Connect with Customers
Americans also selected household names like Disney, Nike and Toyota as the least collaborative brands today. Despite their efforts to engage consumers via Disney’s Magic Kingdom Forum, Nike+ and Toyota’s Community Hub, few Americans considered them the most collaborative brands (12%, 4% and 4% respectively). However, not all companies are lacking when it comes to consumer interaction. One in five Americans chose Google as the most collaborative customer brand.
“Consumers and businesses alike have long recognized the power and potential that the Internet has to improve the products and services businesses offer, creating a better two-way dialogue between customers and their favorite brands,” said Raymond King, CEO at Top Level Design, the company behind .wiki. “Consumers so strongly desire to collaborate with brands that they are ready to take matters into their own hands, as is the case with Ikea and its customer operated Ikea Fans community website where users exchange information, independent of the retailer.”
Customers Have Specific Expectations for Brand Collaboration
According to the 2014 Customer Collaboration report, 38 percent of consumers are most satisfied when they are given the ability to interact with a brand regarding the promotions and offers it provides. Further, consumers actually want to be involved in the product side of a company. Nearly a quarter of consumers (22%) want to collaboratively engage with brands about future products being offered. The ability to share their opinions on product usage guidelines also ranked important to Americans (18%).
“Brands clearly need an easier, turnkey way to collaborate effectively with their customers. Setting up an external wiki is a good first step for businesses to mitigate any concern among audiences about lack of consumer collaboration,” King added. “Our research shows that when customers have an issue with the direction their favorite brands are taking, they lack the ability to offer their input on how to best resolve it. .Wiki offers businesses a new innovative crowd-sourcing mechanism to improve business performance based on what their customers want. As a company it’s far better to have that feedback manifest it in an environment like a wiki, where customers have been invited to contribute, than one outside the brand that limits the ability to communicate with consumers.”
.wiki and TLDesign commissioned YouGov Plc to run the research featured in this release. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2,455 adults in UK and 1,220 adults in US. Fieldwork was undertaken between April 11th–14th, 2014. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK and US adults (aged 18+)