Recently, for the annual”Most Trusted Brands” study, we again asked more than 4,000 Germans which brand they trust most. What sets this study apart? Consumers make their choices openly. That is, there is no ballot paper on which we list brands we rely completely on the memory and associations of those questioned. This unsupported form of question is a special feature: while a list of available trademarks may be influenced by specifications or comparisons, the open statement arises from spontaneous, implicit perception and thus provides us with a very strong value.

Brand trust in 27 categories

Consumers chose their personal brand of trust in a total of 27 categories, 20 of which were consumer goods and seven in the field of health. The result has been surprisingly stable over the years. Volkswagen, for example, has once again taken first place in the automobile category since 2004, which may come as a surprise. After all, the brand has been shaken by the diesel scandal in recent months and years. This result therefore also astounded the Trade press. But while the media carry the scandal on the front pages and in the consciousness, the consumer judges many times after the own experience. And this is – despite the scandal – predominantly positive.

Nevertheless, it is striking that in almost all markets levels are falling and brands are losing strength. An important realization, after all, in times of digitization, the speed at which markets move is increasing. The variety of options is also increasing. Traditional banking and insurance products, for example, are now also exposed to digital competition. It will be exciting to watch the further development. Meanwhile, brand owners are required to maintain and strengthen their brand.

The winners in the consumer goods categories

A total of 3,895 different brands across all categories were named by the respondents – an almost incomprehensible number at first. However, the number of brands in each category varies greatly: the selection of automobiles is concentrated on only 46 brands, while the market for clothing is colourful and diverse. Other “multibrand markets” include travel (226 different brands), food (262 brands) and mineral water, which is typically characterised by many regional brands (296 brands).

The winners are:

Volkswagen (automobiles), Sparkasse (banks), C&A (clothing), Edeka (trading company), Miele (household appliances), Frosch (household cleaner), Nivea (skin care), Gerolsteiner ( mineral water), Deutsche Telekom (mobile phone service provider), Samsung (mobile phones / smartphones), Dr. Oetker (food), TUI (tour operator), Rotkäppchen (sparkling wine), Milka (chocolate), Bahlsen (sweet pastry), Haribo (sweets), Teekanne (tea), Whiskas (pet food), Allianz (insurance) and Persil (detergent).

Most Trusted Brands 2018


The market for health

In the health care sector, we looked at a total of seven markets that have shown high stability over the past few years. All the winners this year ended up in first place again in 2017:

Sweet pea (cold and cough medicine), Kid (hearing aids), Eucerin (Medical skin care), Almased (means of weight reduction), Aspirin (painkiller), Iberogast (digestive) and Abbey (vitamin products).

By far the largest number of different brands, 202, were named by respondents in the vitamin products category, while in the painkillers market they found only 68 different brands.

Most Trusted Brands Health 2018



The study once again shows how diverse the world of brands is – but also how central it is to”create your own brand” Brand development, to stand their ground in this diversity. The more digital and faster our world becomes, the more important the credible brand becomes, which can be trusted for years to come. Increasingly here are Ethics and data security – in the case of digitized business models – also play a role. Just like in individual markets, seals and the differentiation to discount offers.

Reporting on Most Trusted Brands:


Most Trusted Brands 2017   |   Horizon: Germans trust Edeka, Dr. Oetker and Sparkasse


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