BMW, Google and Daimler are the world’s most reputable companies, according to the Reputation Institute’s 2015 Global RepTrak® 100.
Rolex, LEGO, The Walt Disney Company, Canon, Apple, Sony and Intel rounded out the top ten.
The annual survey measures public perceptions of corporate reputations based on seven dimensions: innovation, leadership, governance, citizenship, workplace, performance and products and services.
“The BMW Group as a whole is an innovation driver,” Bill McAndrews, Vice President and Head of BMW Group Corporate Communications, said in a statement. “That’s the basis for everything we do. Our job as communicators is to create platforms or channels which promote contact not only with our products, but also with experts within the company.”
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McAndrews said BMW is reaching out directly to the various stakeholders in the markets. Last year, for example, the company had its first stakeholder dialogue in Korea with suppliers, NGOs, dealers and various government and education institutes in that country.
BMW also had its fifth annual first tier “diversity supplier conference” in Spartanburg where almost 1600 people attended. This promoted contact between minorities and women for suppliers to the BMW Group.
However, even the 100 most visible and well know companies are struggling to get their message across to consumers, the report says. Across the 7 dimensions of reputation, 43 to 59 percent of consumers are uncertain of what these companies are doing.
These consumers are crucial fence sitters who can swing to the positive or to the negative based on whatever information they receive. The CSR dimensions are the ones where the percentage of fence sitters is highest, according to the report.
The companies that topped the RepTrak ® 100 also have some of the strongest corporate brands in the marketplace: They communicate more with consumers, are perceived as more consistent in their communications and are perceived as more distinctive than their competitors.
BMW and Google also topped the Reputation Institute’s 2014 CSR RepTrak® Study, which ranks the world’s 100 most reputable companies based on citizenship, governance and workplace, provides a strong business case for embedding CSR and sustainability principles into corporate strategy and operations. The companies also ranked highly on the 2013 report.