Brands Of The Decade 2022 - p
Ten years ago, we launched Brand Footprint and it’s safe to say that this has been a decade like no other for consumer brands.
A celebration of the best
performing FMCG brands
Find out what to expect in
this one-off publication
Brands of the Decade
Ten years ago, we launched Brand Footprint and it’s safe to say that this has been a decade like no other for consumer brands. To mark the occasion, we have analysed ten years of shopper behaviour and identified the best performing global brands.
From the outbreak of COVID-19 to digitalisation of shopper habits, there has been a lot of change in the FMCG industry landscape. And with spiralling inflation and a war at the heart of Europe, upheaval and unrest shows little signs of slowing.
Despite this, the biggest brands have remained resilient.
This is why, in this special publication, we are celebrating the success of the global brands which have outperformed competition and helped drive the industry forward.
You will find out what each brand has done to achieve such remarkable performances to be named as one of our brands of the decade.
You will discover that these top performing brands have grown their reach by 31% over the decade, compared just 16% for the rest of the branded market, and that they accounted for 11% of all FMCG brand growth.
We also showcase the biggest changes in consumer behaviour to drive the industry and highlight some consistencies across ten years of data – namely that the average household buys a portfolio of 55 FMCG brands in a year, three of which are the brands of the decade.
For those unfamiliar with Brand Footprint, we use a unique metric: the Consumer Reach Point (CRP). This measure combines population, penetration, and consumer choice, meaning we’re able to see how many times shoppers have chosen any given brand.
From there, we can rank the most successful brands across markets, giving you a micro and macro view of brand success. All the global, regional, and local market rankings will be available on our dedicated microsite, giving you easy access to the data you need, so you can review your performance across markets and against competitors.
Across the decade, its thanks to our partners Europanel, GfK, IRI, Intage and CTR, that we have been able to create such a report. Their support makes Brand Footprint possible and, vitally, it allows us to reach an unmatched depth and scale to make these findings truly stand out.
Brands of the Decade is a celebration of the biggest successes in FMCG, uncovering 11 unique stories to inspire and drive brand growth. So, read on to find out who the top-performing brands are, and what they have done consistently to achieve growth.
10 Years of
Before we take a look at which
brands have won the decade,
let’s take a birds-eye view of
the industry and discover what has
changed – and what behaviours
have stayed consistent
10 Years of Consumer Choices
The FMCG industry has shown itself to be incredibly resilient: delivering consistent growth over the last decade. From 2012 to 2021 the industry grew by 33% – a $650 billion increase in value sales.
To understand what has driven this growth, let us first take a look at what’s changed.
Population growth is responsible for approximately half of this increase. We have seen the number of households grow globally by 17% – an increase of 180 million households.
This holds a mixed picture for brands. While there are more shoppers to go after, it also means that 1% penetration globally today is almost 1.8 million more households than it was ten years ago.
And the bigger a brand is, the harder it needs to work to maintain the same level of global penetration. For example, if a brand had 30% penetration in 2012 it meant it had 316 million households buying it. In 2021, to achieve the same penetration, a brand would have had to attract over 370 million shoppers: an increase of 54 million.
When thinking about the next decade, brand owners should factor in long-term population growth when setting penetration targets. (We will discuss the importance of penetration for consistent growth and penetration targets in the next few pages.)
The upside is that this population growth has had an almost one-to-one positive impact on the number of brand choices made. This metric has risen from 329 billion brand choices to 382 billion – a 16.2% increase.
The other driver of the industry value growth is how much shoppers have spent. When we look at this metric specific to brand spend, we see that, on average, the spend on brands has increased by over $130 per household.
Generally, when looking at data, we like to analyse change. It’s interesting, and it shows us how brands must adapt to shopper behaviour and demand – information that is always useful.
However, with ten years of Brand Footprint we also wanted to identify the trends which haven’t changed. The data points that are consistent across the decade. This data offers brands confidence, as they can refer to long-term behavioural truths which will last for the next ten years.
The first behavioural truth is that the number of brands that shoppers buy remains the same today as it did ten years ago. The average household buys a portfolio of 55 FMCG brands in a year.
Importantly, this doesn’t mean the same 55 brands each year. The challenge for brand owners still remains: how to enter a shopper’s portfolio – and then stay there.
The second behavioural truth is that the only way to grow is through finding more shoppers. Across the decade, 88% of growing brands did this.
As a brand owner, increasing your number of shoppers should be your primary goal year after year. Once this is in place, frequency and loyalty follow suit.
The third consistent behavioural truth is that growing brands gain 1.1% penetration points within a market.
This is a benchmark for success: if your brand gains 1.1% penetration points, then it will have had a good year. It’s certainly true that plenty of brands will have gained more than this, but far more will lie below this benchmark, including of course, those brands which saw no growth.
Other considerations for setting sensible penetration targets include your current size. If you are small (<10% penetration) aim for a penetration gain of 0.5%, and if you are bigger you can be more ambitious and aim for 1.5%.
The Power of Consistency
The rules for growth appear simple, but we know it’s not always as black-and-white as the data shows. If we next look at the 50 most chosen FMCG brands globally, and how many of these brands have grown, we see that it’s like flipping a coin: it’s a 50/50 game.
Over the last ten years, on average 25 of the Top 50 global brands have grown.
An important distinction in this is that we are not seeing the same brands growing year on year. In fact, only two brands have grown in each of the last 10 years, with only six more growing 9 of the 10 years.
This highlights just how hard consistent growth is. But these brands should be held up as best-in-class examples – and celebrated. A big congratulations to both Dove and Vim, from Unilever, for achieving this remarkable feat.
So, what can we learn from them? What have these brands done consistently?
Well, both consistently gained more shoppers. Year after year, they reached more households and in turn, they saw an increase in the number of times each household bought them.
This is consistent across all our Brands of the Decade. Each one has increased its shopper base over the ten years.
So, how can brands look to mirror this success by achieving consistent shopper gains? Let’s look at the 11 award winning brands to understand what they have done.
The Brands of
Dive into the success stories from
three brands that got it right over
the last 10 years
Over the last decade, Dove has seen its CRPs grow in every edition of Brand Footprint, one of only two brands in the global Top 50 to achieve such a phenomenal result.
Dove products are now chosen over two billion times a year, which is an increase of 80% in the last decade: 900 million extra in CRPs.
Such impressive global growth has meant it has featured regularly in Brand Footprint over the years and it was, in fact, the brand that saw the strongest growth in our inaugural edition of the publication.
What’s even more remarkable about this continuous growth is the effect of the pandemic: the Health & Beauty sector suffered, as did many brands, but Dove managed to see continued growth despite the obvious challenges.
Dove’s growth can be put down to the fact that the brand has consistently gained more shoppers. More than a third of the global population now buys it. That is more than 450m families using the brand each year, a number which has risen by over 100m.
Year after year, it reached more households and, in turn, the brand saw an increase in the number of times each household bought it.
But what’s key is the degree of change. The number of shoppers increased at a higher rate: it was over double the increase in frequency, with the brand’s increasing shopper base accounting for 68% of the brands growth. Only 32% came from the change in frequency.
So how has Dove achieved this? Through innovation, strong purpose-driven communication, category extensions and renovations.
Since 2010, we have seen the launch of Dove Men, Dove Baby, Dove Hair Care and most recently this year the relaunch of its body care range - Body Love Collection.
Time and again, the brand has actively looked to shatter beauty stereotypes and go against toxic beauty standards. This started in 2004 with its ‘Real Beauty Campaign’, after the brand found that only 2% of women considered themselves to be beautiful. The journey has only evolved since then, to what is now a social brand mission that led to multiple initiatives, like the Dove Hair Crown, a campaign and range of products designed to end race-based hair discrimination, and its recent fight against digital distortion in ads and social media.
Dove has proved beyond doubt that having a clear purpose and acting on it drives business results.
Of course, none of this means that Dove can rest on its laurels. We live in a world where even the most successful brands have both challenges and growth opportunities. In 12 markets, penetration is over 50%, with a high of 73% in Bolivia. In its two key markets, India and the US, it’s bought by over 190m households.
There are still many countries where penetration is low. In South Korea, it is just 6%. There is plenty to aim at for the next decade of growth, with millions of potential shoppers remaining in India, Mainland China and across Europe. All this, while the brand continues its mission to reduce plastic as part of its packaging rethink, to further evolve its Planet protection initiatives and to be recognised for environmental credentials on top of social ones.
Prior to 2021, Dettol was also a consistent grower, with nine years of back-to-back CRP increases. Its growth was both consistent and strong. Double-digit growth happened in four of the previous eight years (pre-COVID) and outperforming the Top 50 was the norm.
COVID-19 accelerated Dettol's growth, which saw six years of CRP gains in 2020 alone, when the brand grew 40%, with a 5.5% penetration-point increase. This increase was not just the biggest global gain that year, but the biggest we have seen in the history of Brand Footprint.
This equated to 68 million more Dettol shoppers – a gain 2.5x bigger than any other ever seen.
Such an achievement comes down to consistency across markets. Dettol had 1% penetration or higher in 22 markets, and the brand grew its number of shoppers in all of them. Last year, when we spoke to Pankaj Duhan, Dettol Global Category Director, he said this about how the brand had adapted to the ever-changing situation:
“The first task was to make sure there was ramped up supply and it took many months to be able to truly cater to it. At the same time, it was important to recognise that preventative hygiene habits like hand washing were the true defence against COVID-19.
Dettol partnered with many national governments and reputed NGOs to spread the message of the importance of hygiene habits in tackling the spread of the virus. One of the standout examples was the Dettol Hand Wash Challenge, which received over 125 billion views on social media.”
Despite seeing decline in 2021, Dettol has moved from being chosen 450 million times across the globe in 2011 to over 1.1 billion times in 2021. This extraordinary growth means the brand was selected 1.5x more last year compared to 10 years ago, and regardless of this short-term decline, the brand is still ahead of the growth trajectory it was on pre-COVID.
Although the number of shoppers numbers fell as well last year, over the decade the brand has increased its buyer base by over 100m – a 70% increase.
What did the brand do to achieve such phenomenal results? Originally launched in Indian hospitals over 80 years ago, Dettol Antiseptic Liquid was first used during surgical procedures. Since then, the brand has diversified to categories including bar soaps, liquid hand wash, body wash, and even the Homecare sector, with products available in surface cleansing and laundry detergents.
Universally positioned as ‘protector from germs’, it gains most of its CRPs from Asia and in particular India, where it experienced double digit growth in almost every year of Brand Footprint. Dettol’s brand equity there is such that in 2014 the Indian Prime Minister launched its campaign, Swachh Bharat, endorsing its Clean India message as one of his key governmental policies.
Throughout the decade Dettol launched smaller, more affordable packs which helped drive penetration in rural areas and smaller towns across Southern Asian markets. This is reflected in the spend per CRP being $1 and under in India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Indonesia, whereas in Europe it is at least $4.
The brand has also partnered with other Reckitt brands to help address water sanitation issues. In partnership with Harpic and the World Toilet Organisation, the brands announced the opening of the first World Toilet College in Rishikesh in March 2016. The college will teach students the skills needed to design and build toilets and is primarily aimed at young people.
With increasing competition in the soap and hand wash space, Dettol used statistics which showed low levels of access to basic sanitation to grow the category, igniting a social movement to spread awareness and bring out behavioural change around hygiene and sanitation.
During India’s annual pilgrimage, volunteers distributed branded hand sanitisers, bringing a new usage occasion to the market and showing the breadth of its portfolio. Dettol’s Swachh express bus visited many small towns and over 2,000 villages across India. Innovative marketing techniques and the use of local radio stations, leafleting and even tannoys to deliver public announcements on the importance of personal sanitation country-wide.
Dettol now counts the United Nations, the Gates Foundation and several other NGOs as its partners in the fight against poor hygiene.
The brand has plenty of room to return to growth in the future. For example, in the Chinese Mainland, less than one in five households buy the brand, meaning it has plenty of new buyers to target in the years to come.
Returning to our conversation with Pankaj, he had this to say about Dettol’s consistent success, “It has been an unflinching focus on what Dettol does best – ensuring the highest standard of germ protection. This focus has created a very clear purpose and a consistent brand footprint across the world.”
With this unrelenting focus we are sure the brand can return to the same growth path it was on before, gaining more and more shoppers around the world.
In every edition of Brand Footprint there has been one brand that has topped the ranking – Coca-Cola. With growth of 3.5% in both 2020 and 2021, the brand was chosen 6.6 billion times in the latest year.
Over the decade (2012-2021) the brand was chosen on 63.8 billion occasions by shoppers. For context, that is 21 billion times more than the next most chosen brand.
One of the brands key strengths is its availability. Coca-Cola is present in almost every market in the world, with the brand as far back as 1923 aiming to be ‘within an arm’s reach of desire’.
And where the brand is present it tends to dominate. It is the most chosen Beverage brand in 26 (out of 48) markets. And when the brand is not number 1, it often features close to the top.
Not only is the brand the most chosen in our main FMCG ranking, which is based on purchases for consumption in the home, Coca-Cola also tops both the online brand ranking and the out-of-home ranking – another indicator of the brand’s dominance across channels and occasions.
But it has not all been plain sailing for Coca-Cola. Like many brands in the carbonated soft drinks category, they have had to adjust and adapt to changing sugar regulations across markets.
After seeing some CRP decline through the decade, the brand has shown its resilience and has returned to growth with three years of consecutive CRP increases growth to reach an all-time high in 2021. This performance has meant the brand’s footprint has increased 9% since 2011, or in real terms the brand was chosen 500 million more times in 2021.
Coca-Cola’s success has been solely down to shopper recruitment. The number of households buying the brand increased from 460 million in 2012 to just under 540 million in 2021 – a 17% rise. While the number of interactions with the brand per shopper has fallen from 14 in 2012 to 12 in 2021.
The brand is in a unique position. It has the second highest global penetration and, in several markets it has over 90% penetration and exceptionally high purchase frequency. For example, in Mexico the brand reaches 98% of households and is bought 62 times across the year.
In fact, the brand has over half the population buying it in 32 different markets. However, the brand struggles in Southern Asia, where penetration is under 20% and goes to as low as 3% in India.
Over the decade the brand has remained relevant through a combination of new variants, innovative responses to packaging and tie-ins with cultural and sporting events.
When Coca-Cola Zero was launched, it was the brands biggest in 22 years and its first product targeted at men. Rather than being a ‘diet’ beverage, Coca-Cola Zero is positioned as ‘calorie-free’. Its masculine focus is supported through celebrity endorsements, advertising and sponsorships, including the release of Skyfall back in 2012.
The brand also delivered a personal touch through their ‘Share a Coke’ campaign, which took personalisation to 32 countries. It produced 800 million bottles with the most popular 150 names in each market.
Beverage packaging lends itself well to innovation. Under the ‘Hello Happiness’ banner, Coca-Cola in Dubai turned used bottle caps into currency. In a specially constructed phone booth, migrant workers could phone home by inserting a bottle cap as payment for the call.
In 2016 Coca-Cola and PepsiCo united to discuss downsizing their products and cutting back on cut-price deals in stores taking an ethical – rather than a solely profit-driven – stance towards product development and packaging. This is congruent with the growing demand for more sustainable packaging and production, which has only accelerated since.
Adjusting package sizes has a secondary effect: differentiation. In 2015, Coca-Cola launched a 1.25-litre bottle as an alternative to the 2-litre bottle, and a 7.5 ounce can as an alternative to the traditional 12-ounce can, resulting in a 9% spike in sales in the USA.
Prior to the brand returning to growth, 2018 marked the beginning of the revival for the brand. In fact, Coca-Cola enjoyed strong growth in every region other than Mexico (-7%).
Strong performance in China Mainland and the UK paved the way for the brands resurgence in 2018, as it gained more shoppers in both markets. Buoyed by an unusually hot summer and England’s success at the football World Cup, Coke Zero was the key to the brand’s success in the UK — gaining eight penetration points in the 12-month period.
In China Mainland, a focus on smaller pack sizes (both single- and multi-serve) helped drive growth across major cities. Coke No Sugar also performed well, playing to consumer demand for healthier options. Interestingly, the markets where sugar taxes have been introduced are generally where the brand performed best.
In 1971 the brand launched its famous advert, ‘I’d like to buy the world a Coke’. Well, the world certainly likes to buy Coca-Cola and with its ability to adjust to ever-changing challenges we have no doubt that if we were to celebrate the Brands of Decade again in 2032, it will still be the world’s most chosen brand.
Brands of the
And now, the fastest growing global
brands in their respective categories
Vim is the only other Top 50 most chosen global brand (alongside Dove) to have seen growth in every edition of Brand Footprint. In fact, the brand saw both the biggest CRP gain (+1.4bn) and shoppers gain (+137m) of any FMCG brand.
This meant the brand saw the number of times it was chosen triple between 2021 and 2011, whilst gaining almost 10% penetration-points globally.
Vim has seen a similar growth path to that of its compatriot Dove, with frequency also growing over the decade alongside the shopper growth. Again, the significant difference is the level of change for both metrics and their contribution to the brand’s growth. Almost identically to Dove, Vim achieved 67% of its CRP growth through gaining more shoppers and 33% from being bought more often.
Vim’s success has come through the introduction of new formats and its focus on emerging markets. Whilst it’s particularly strong in Southern Asia, where Vim is best known as a dishwashing brand, the brand also has a robust footprint in Vietnam, Argentina and Brazil, where the brand is best known for its bleach product. Additionally, Brazil was a completely new market for the brand within the last decade as it looked to increase its global presence.
For Indian consumers, the Vim Bar is still the preferred format, but liquid variants have also gained momentum over the decade.
Part of its success in this market was down to more homes in rural areas getting a Liquefied Petroleum Gas connection for cooking through a Central Government scheme called Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana, meaning people stopped using a wood fired oven. This meant there was not as much ash available for cleaning utensils (which was previously used as cleaning product once mixed with water). Additionally, dishes used for cooking with gas could be cleaned using a dishwashing product that was not as abrasive as ash. Vim used this opportunity to drive growth for their dishwashing bars.
More recently the brand launched the #VimWhatAPlayer campaign that aimed to break gender stereotypes around dishwashing. Going by the COVID-led impetus of male participation in household chores, the brand took it as an opportunity to break the age-old stereotype around dish-washing with this campaign.
The campaign communicated the functional benefits of the product around making the daily chore easier. The brand collaborated with local cricketer Virender Sehwag for the campaign, which was aired throughout the IPL season.
In Sri Lanka, meanwhile, where the brand is bought by 93% of all households, the brand partnered with the Ministry of Women and Child Affairs to launch ‘Vim DiviyataDisne’—an initiative seeking to economically empower Sri Lankan women in pursuit of a more balanced entrepreneurial workforce.
In Argentina, Vim’s Lavandinas Gel variant overtook its liquid format back in 2016, entering 400,000 new households that year.
The gel – a concentrated product that seeps into the sponge – achieved the greatest growth in penetration in homes with young housewives. With a disinfectant message remaining at its core, the versatility of Vim’s bleach gel means it can function as a replacement for other cleaners while maintaining the practicality of cleaning smaller, hard-to-reach surfaces.
More recently in Vietnam, Vim proactively diversified its product portfolio to map with different consumer demands on specific cleaning purposes, launching across multiple formats such as liquid, gel, spray, and tablet forms.
Vim also worked on its brand image by being a pioneer in various movements / non-government programs to educate Vietnamese people on the important role of health protection in order to against illnesses caused by bacteria, epidemics, environmental pollution, and water pollution.
All these initiatives together have driven the brand’s consistently strong growth over the decade, propelling the brand 30 places up the rankings to be the 11th most chosen global brand in 2021, and very likely to break into the Top 10 in the coming years.
Over the last decade, Lay’s has seen its CRPs grow almost every year, with 2016 being the only exception to an outstanding expansion of its consumer reach.
Lay’s was chosen 2.9bn times in 2021 – and over 4bn if we consider all the local names (Walkers, Sabritas, Margarita, Chipsy). This is up from 1.9bn in 2011, an increase of 990m (+51%), the second biggest increase we have seen in the decade across the whole of FMCG and the biggest of any salty snack brand.
This growing footprint results from a regular development of Lay’s buyers base. The brand has featured regularly in Brand Footprint amongst the top 10 best recruiters, adding more than 110m (+38%) shoppers over these last 10 years, the third biggest global shopper gain.
The penetration of Lay’s has grown by almost 5 points, and Lay’s is now purchased by 32.3% of Households globally.
Even though its homeland, the USA, still represents a huge portion of its contact points with consumers (27.4% in 2021), Lay’s has significantly expanded across geographies over the years, entering more markets recently, like Brazil and Italy in 2014.
As a key ingredient to its local successes, Lay’s has constantly been involving its consumer in developing and choosing the next trendy flavours. Since its first launch in 2012 in the United States, the “Do Us A Flavor” campaign and its successors allow consumers to submit their flavour idea through a contest, and to vote for their favourite one.
Developing flavours tapping into local consumers’ preference is the brand’s signature, and still contributes to Lay’s growth, as this year in Germany with the Lay’s Iconic range, which included “Pizza Hut”, “KFC” and “Subway” variants and contributed an additional +1% penetration-point to the brand.
Across the years the brand has also used a mix of traditional push marketing (examples include celebrity endorsement by footballer Lionel Messi in TV, outdoor, digital, in-store and on-pack advertising in time with events such as the 2014 FIFA World Cup), to ‘pull’ marketing through a global crowd-sourcing campaign to create new flavours.
In 2017, innovation was instrumental to Lay’s success in Indonesia. New flavour launches – such as Fried Chicken, Spicy Lobster, Pepper & Lime, and Steak – added five million new shoppers, and its “Life Needs Flavour” campaign encouraged sharing moments. An online campaign for a special “smile pack” offered shoppers prizes in return for social media selfies.
India is always a key market to succeed in for global brands, given the size of its population. On average, Lay’s has been growing its footprint in India by +16% over the past 10 years.
2021 is no exception, with a steady growth of +28% after a difficult 2020. Lay’s is reviving on both penetration & frequency of purchase, crossing pre-covid penetration. The brand has been heavily communicating targeting in-home occasions with their campaign “Ghar Par Lays, Always”, (Lay’s At Home, Always!) launching dedicated bigger packs for each of the In-Home consumption (WAH! For Work at Home, etc…)
Globally, Lay’s CRP growth has followed the same slightly better trend in pandemic times compared to pre-Covid level (+4% on average in 2012-2019 vs +5% in 2020-2021), most likely benefiting from the rise of In-Home snacking occasions. However, with 16.5% penetration in total India and 27% in Urban India, Lay’s still has plenty more room for growth.
Colgate is purchased by more shoppers than any other FMCG brand, and the only brand with a global penetration over 50%.
In 2021, 708m shoppers bought a Colgate item, up from 638m ten years ago, meaning an increase of 70m shoppers over the last decade.
This shopper growth has led to CRPs moving from 3.7bn in 2011 to over 4.2bn in 2021 – an increase of over 500m (+13.4%), more than any other global oral care brand.
Whilst the shopper growth has slowed in more recent years, in both 2014 and 2015 Colgate saw the biggest global penetration gain of any brand.
Colgate is purchased by over half of the population in 24 markets, and by over 75% of the population in 12 of those markets – it’s a staple of homes in countries around the world.
Toothpaste drives Colgate’s dominance, but Toothbrushes and Mouthwash contribute significantly. On average the Toothbrush penetration is ~40% of the Toothpaste penetration per market, and Mouthwash is around ~10% on average.
Innovation is crucial to Colgate’s brand performance, with launches across the decade including Colgate Total Pro Gum Health and Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief mouthwashes, and the Colgate 360° battery toothbrush.
In 2015, Colgate capitalised on the rise of affluence and personal hygiene in India when it launched Oral Health Care Month. Built on the finding that 47% of India’s population had never visited a dentist, Colgate provided free dental check-ups, an offer taken up by 4.9 million consumers.
Colgate also introduced more technology and innovation to the market this year, including its power toothbrushes, which come with USB chargers and nice simple cases.
Even with this world-leading brand penetration, Colgate has more potential for expansion. In Mainland China, Colgate can win an additional 40m households by reaching its highest observed penetration of the last 10 years.
In 2012, Colgate launched Optic White with an advertising campaign featuring actress Solenn Heussaff, and this boosted awareness and sales. The use of toothpaste here is becoming more frequent, and consumers are beginning to look for extra value such as whitening and sensitive variations.
This task will be tough in an exceptionally competitive market place – where shoppers are premiumizing beyond the ‘mass’ tiers and have adopted brands serving very specific oral health factors. However, shoppers are willing to pay more for product benefits like these –currently the unit price for Sensodyne from GSK is five times higher than for mainstream Colgate toothpaste.
But this simple exercise in headroom quantification shows that Colgate has not yet reached its true potential.
Oreo certainly lived up to its positing as ‘The world’s favourite cookie’ with one of the strongest performances of any FMCG brand in the last decade, growing how often it was chosen by consumers by almost 400m (+48%) since 2011.
Its growth was solely driven by its recruitment of shoppers, with 108m more buying the brand in 2021 compared to the very first edition of Brand Footprint – the 4th biggest global increase. This performance has seen the brand often appearing in the top performing brands in terms of shopper recruitment, and it in fact saw the biggest global penetration gain of any brand in 2013.
This sensational performance over the years comes despite seeing a small decline in 2015 and 2016, after which it has seen five years of consecutive growth.
One of Oreo’s key strengths is its ability and willingness to localise its products. From blueberry ice-cream flavour in Indonesia to banana and dulce de leche in Argentina, the brand is not afraid of adapting the recipe in order to gain buyers.
A great success for Oreo has been in Mainland China, where the brand has become the number one biscuit and sits 18th in the Chinese FMCG ranking – a list dominated by local brands. Research with Chinese consumers led the brand to change its formula to make the product less sweet and introduce Mini Oreo packs to position the biscuit as a more affordable snack. This market is now the second biggest for Oreo after the US.
This approach to product innovation has also been reflected in its marketing. Its adaptable and real-time digital campaigns, such as the ‘You Can Still Dunk in The Dark’ tweet executed during the black-out at the 2013 Super Bowl, have helped the cream-filled sandwich biscuit to become an iconic brand around the world.
Understanding that people don’t want to skimp on taste, Oreo also launched mini options that allow shoppers to indulge themselves with a smaller portion, such as Oreo Thins. This helped drive penetration by tapping into new usage occasions but also recruiting shoppers who wanted smaller amounts, or maybe didn't want so many calories.
Oreo is not just a brand to be enjoyed at-home either, with 1/3 of brand choices made for consumption outside of the home. The brand sits 4th in our out-of-home most chosen snacking brands and over the last five years has seen 20% growth from these occasions as well.
Despite having the 8th highest global penetration of any brand (27.9%), the brand still has opportunities across all regions. In Asia where penetration is 22.6%, penetration is under 15% in the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and India. Whilst in Europe where penetration is slightly higher at 24.1% it is comparatively low in Sweden, France and Italy.
Over the past 10 years, Sunsilk has achieved an average of 5% CRP growth. This consistency has only been interrupted by the pandemic. From 2013 to 2019 Sunsilk grew every year – but with the pandemic shifting consumer behaviour and beauty routines the category suffered, and Sunsilk suffered a blip in 2020. However, the momentum was quickly regained in 2021 and, after learning from this first difficult year, Sunsilk returned to CRP growth.
This performance meant that over the decade the brand gained 765 million CRPs (+62% vs 2011), to be chosen just shy of 2 billion times in 2021.
Winning in the Hair Care category is no easy task. Hair Care is one of the most competitive and fragmented beauty categories. Dozens of global and local mass brands compete for shelf space and mental availability, which means being relevant in this dynamic category means going much further than pure functionality. To become the fastest growth brand of the decade in such a competitive category, Sunsilk has demonstrated impressive consistency of buyer growth to build real brand momentum.
Even through the pandemic, Sunsilk managed to consistently increase its buyer base.
COVID-19 impacted frequency of purchase for the brand, but not shopper numbers. In fact, shopper numbers have grown consistency through the decade - a fantastic achievement to continually top up the ‘leaky bucket’ (that all brands experience) and build sustainable growth, resulting in an additional 85 million global shoppers.
Sunsilk benefits from its demographic positioning - younger consumers in Latin American and Asian markets are a stronghold for the brand, and a growing cohort of the global population. But this is a demanding cohort with high expectations, looking for relevant products to meet multiple needs. To win, brands must demonstrate strong appeal and purpose delivered with a consistent strategy. These have been the ingredients for Sunsilk’s recipe for success.
Behind the brand is a strong message of providing girls with the confidence to achieve their dreams, a confidence that comes from hair that feels and looks good (functional benefit), while also challenging social norms and established models (strong purpose).
Sunsilk was one the first hair care brands to innovate and promote products for curly and textured hair. The Seda Boom range in Brazil holds an inclusion message strongly connected to local culture and beliefs. This local relevancy has been achieved despite being a mass brand with a footprint in over 50 markets. Its most successful ranges are in fact co-created with local beauty influencers, such as the brand ambassador Gabi Oliveira in Brazil. Its Hijab line, a success in markets such as Indonesia, is another key example of inclusion, local relevancy and consumer-centred approach, not by chance targeted at the fastest growing groups.
Sunsilk is certainly an inspiration in the category and its reach possibilities are far from over, with lots of headroom to grow in markets where over 60% of the population is not yet a brand buyer, such as Colombia, India, and Malaysia. Surely there is space for a young, dynamic, and affordable brand like Sunsilk to continue to grow.
Nivea is a definite success story from the last decade. Despite suffering in 2020 and 2021 due to the impact of COVID-19 – like many brands in the Health & Beauty sector – prior to this the brand saw eight years of consecutive growth, growing by 22% from 2011 to 2019.
Regardless of the brand seeing decline in 2020 and 2021, the brand added an incredible 127m CRPs across the decade to make it the fastest growing skin moisturising brand. Nivea is now the 29th most chosen FMCG brand and has risen 15 places since our premier Brand Footprint.
This extraordinary growth has come through the brand increasing shoppers, which it did in nine of the ten years, to see its buyer base increase from 246m to 294m – an increase of 20%.
What is remarkable about the eight years of continuous growth was the consistency is gains made year-after-year, with Nivea gaining 6.75m shoppers per year on average up to 2019. It’s also promising that the brand gained 4.4m shoppers in 2021, despite global lockdowns still negatively impacting the sector during that period.
This growth means the brand is present in almost one in every four houses (24%) across the world, whilst in both Europe and Latin America it is bought by every second household with 51% penetration in both regions.
Such strong presence means the brand is the most chosen Health & Beauty brand in Europe and sits in sixth position in Latin America.
Nivea was the inventor of contemporary skin care, more than 110 years ago. The brand has helped shaped the entire skin and personal care category ever since.
When we spoke to Nivea in early 2020 about their long-term continued success, they had this to say: “The brand’s success is built on two strategic pillars: consistency and innovation. We have a very strong core in skin care, which originates from our Nivea Crème product. Based on this strong fundamental, we’ve been able to extend into new categories and innovate in existing categories. With an in-depth understanding of the skin and compelling
consumer insight, NIVEA has the ability to develop disruptive innovations.”
Whilst Nivea is perhaps best known for its Skin Moisturising products, its growth across the years has come from its whole portfolio with Deodorants, Body Wash and Suncare becoming key ingredients to the brand’s success too.
Outside of innovation and expanding into new categories and markets, there were two completely different types of campaign that really stood out in the last decade, both from Brazil.
The first was a campaign to help keep kids safe on the beach. Nivea magazine ads came complete with a tear-out GPS bracelet which connected to a smartphone app and triggered an alarm if children wandered beyond a set distance.
Then Nivea launched its award-winning UV protection campaign, which helped children keep safe from the sun on the beach.
Using UV-sensitive dolls to show parents and children how important it is to apply sunblock. The dolls went red when exposed to too much sun, illustrating the danger of UV rays, even at times when the average consumer might not think that an SPF cream was needed.
Campaigns like this have clearly paid off. Brazil is now Nivea’s second biggest CRP market (after Germany) and where the brand has seen ten years of continuous growth even in the difficult COVID years.
Finding the right balance between winning in established markets and gaining traction in new territories is always a difficult task. Despite the success in markets like Brazil, the more recent decline has come from Europe, in particular Germany and Great Britain. If Nivea can recover in these markets then we are sure it will return to the consistent growth it saw previously.
Downy started the decade stronger than any other Top 50 brand, growing its reach by 63% from 2011 to 2015. In this time it was the fastest growing global brand in back-to-back years in 2013 and 2014.
Downy has had more of a mixed performance since then with both growth and decline. Over the whole ten years it has grown its CRP by 42% or increased the numbers of times it was chosen by 383m, making it the fastest growing Fabric care brand.
The brands long-term performance is fuelled by gains in shoppers, which increased in all ten years. When the brand has declined, it has done so through shoppers buying the brand less often over the course of a year. This is most evident in the last two years where the brand has lost almost two buying occasions per shopper across the globe.
This is partly due to the category in which it operates, with Fabric Conditioners being seen as more of a discretionary category at just over 60% global penetration, compared to Fabric Detergents which are bought by almost 95% of global households. This in turn meant that during the pandemic, the purchase frequency of the whole category fell, and it has done so most acutely in South-East Asia which are high frequency markets and key to the success of Downy.
The good news is with lockdowns largely over, we are sure business as usual will return to the brand which has seen some of the biggest growth figures in Brand Footprint history. Let’s look back to see what the brand did previously to achieve these record-breaking results.
In 2013 Downy deployed strategies that engaged with consumers all over the world, and appealed to multiple senses. These included new products such as Downy Infusions, partnering with other brands – to launch Tide with a touch of Downy, for instance – and innovative marketing campaigns such as a series of live music events in the US.
Downy’s best performance that year came in Indonesia where the brand launched its own online interactive drama series called ‘The Scent of Passion’.
Downy also gave a masterclass in individuality by encouraging shoppers to create a ‘personalised’ scent by combining two different Downy products, promoting the idea through a website with a ‘Fortune Smeller’ who revealed consumers’ personal fragrance.
Downy also positioned its products as personal scents for women to be worn as part of a stylish outfit. It furthered this link with fashion through celebrity endorsements, media partnerships and digital campaigns which engaged local consumers in conversation.
The following year in 2014, building on its multi-sensory campaign, Downy used a Game of Thrones theme encouraging dual usage such as Downy fabric conditioner with Tide laundry.
2014 also saw the launch of the ‘Rip your clothes on’ commercial during the Victoria’s Secret fashion show. The importance of softness and comfort was further promoted with the #Hugmore video and consumers were invited to design the next Downy Simple Pleasure scent.
In 2015, growth was largely fuelled by the Asian markets where it continued to expand by encouraging an extra product to become a core part of the laundry cycle. For example, the Timeless Collection was launched in Asia, reaching into occasions long confined to the personal care space such as perfumes.
Each product in the range was designed by famous fashion houses to emulate the scent of iconic movie stars. Using the tagline “Do men notice their women?” the brand drew a ground-breaking but convincing connection between a woman’s laundry scent and her personal style and allure.
Following a similar strategy aimed at families, Downy extended its Infusions line with a Sweet Dreams collection. The new collection uses the tagline ‘Tuck in, Turn off’ during Sleep Awareness Week. A new category, which added to consumers’ laundry repertoire, invited shoppers to enjoy the benefits of calming scents on their bed linen. A good night’s sleep, said Downy, starts in the laundry room.
After a shaky start to the decade, pasta brand Barilla saw six years of consecutive growth and it finished being chosen 114m more times in 2021 than it did in 2011.
During that time the brand moved from having 130m shoppers in 2012 to over 170m shoppers in 2021 – a growth of over 30%.
Although the brand saw a decline again in 2021, this is the bounce-back effect of having seen double-digit growth in 2020, as most of our out-of-home eating moved in-home and long-life staples such as pasta benefitted.
The number of CRPs the brand had in 2021 was in-line with where the brand would have ended up if it had remained on the same growth trajectory as the previous half-decade.
These incredible numbers have made it the fastest growing pasta brand in the world, and the second most penetrated brand in its home market Italy (second only to Mulino Bianco – another brand from the Barilla Group).
The brand is particularly strong in Europe, with 35% of households buying the brand, and alongside the US these regions accounted for 95% of its CRPs, making winning here imperative for the brand’s success. And that’s exactly what it did.
In 2015, the year the brand saw its strongest growth, Barilla showed that even large multinationals can behave like a convincing local brand.
Provenance and quality reign in France, so the brand launched its first line of organic pasta. Miloud Benahouda, Barilla’s VP for Western Europe, stated that in five years’ time this range could account for 10% of total sales.
Acting on evidence that American consumers are willing to pay more for certain premium attributes such as whole grain, added nutrients and convenience, Barilla took steps to grow its margins and attract new demographics in the US. Nationwide, the Barilla Pronto range – prepared in one pan and ready in 10 minutes – was introduced last year.
In Chicago, Barilla teamed up with online grocer, Peapod, to launch pasta meal kits
delivered direct to door. These campaigns saw the brand’s CRPs grow faster here than it did globally.
Barilla also introduced gluten-free options that same year, making the brand and category available to a whole group which would not previously have considered it.
As already stated, Europe – in particularly Italy, France and Germany – and the US are key for the brand. Continuing to gain shoppers across these four markets will go a long way to keeping the brand seeing the stunning growth it already has.
However, with penetration of 8.2% in Latin America and just 0.2% in Asia, the brand’s biggest opportunity could be to increase its presence in more markets. Maintaining performance in the core markets alongside winning over new shoppers in new markets could create a real step-change in growth for the brand in the decade ahead.
of the Brands
of the Decade
Some key facts which showcase
the size and impact these brands
have made on the FMCG industry
Global Brands 2021
In this next chapter three
brands which excelled in the last year
In 2021, three global brands all gained 1% penetration: Maggi, Pepsi and Vim. But in terms of actual shoppers gained, Maggi has won out due to the fact it had a higher starting penetration than both Pepsi and Vim. This meant Maggi needed to find 6.75 million shoppers (due to population growth) just to maintain the same level of penetration.
But the brand did more than this. It gained 18.8 million more shoppers in 2021, moving from 33.6% penetration to 34.6%.
Maggi gained penetration in nine of its ten biggest markets. In its two biggest markets, India and Philippines, the brand gained +3.3% and +3.2% penetration points respectively.
In India, Maggi grew on the back of high growth in snacking that started during the pandemic. For perspective, other snacking categories like Biscuits and Savoury snacks have gone up by 10% and 14% respectively (in volume). Noodles, where Maggi plays a large part, grew by 15%.
Last year Maggi manufacturer Nestlé also launched the ONE Nestlé project. It is an entrepreneurship program, where youth will be given the chance to open franchises of Nestlé's products. One of the popular franchises as a part of that program was Maggi Hotspot. These initiatives have helped drive further interest for the brand, encouraging shoppers to go and try these recipes at home.
Whilst in the Philippines, despite the FMCG industry being hard-hit by the pandemic, some categories (particularly cooking staples in which Maggi operates) thrived.
Maggi Magic Sarap is their biggest variant, and the market leader in meal flavourings being both affordable and versatile (as it can be used across many different dishes). The 8g single sachet was a key driver of their success. It is present in key retail channels and sits at an accessible price point to help cash-strapped shoppers manage their spend.
The brand has also adopted their offer by increasing their bundle packs from 12 to 14 and bigger individual sachets of 50g and 120g. This has helped them capture shoppers in Modern Trade retailers.
Maggi is no one-hit wonder either. It has seen growth in seven of the last ten years globally. Since 2012, it has increased its number of shoppers by 33%.
Red Bull saw the biggest CRP gain outside of the Top 50 take-home FMCG brands. It saw a +16% CRP increase, which equates to 77M more CRPs in 2021. This is the joint 10th biggest increase seen globally, moving it up 13 places in the rankings to 65th.
This strong performance is a continuation of growth it has seen for the last four years, increasing CRPs by 170M since 2017. If the brand continues a similar trajectory it could break into the Top 50 within the next 5 years.
Behind its 2021 performance was a global +0.7% penetration-point increase. As a result, it now sits on level pegging with some of the biggest gains we saw last year; in terms of shoppers, equating to an extra 9.6M shoppers. The brand gained CRPs and shoppers in most of its key markets including the US, Germany, Mainland China, the UK and its home market, Austria.
In the US, the brand has captured the attention of consumers in need of extra energy and looking for Ready-to-Drink alternatives to the more traditional coffee, with Red Bull becoming the favoured caffeine staple for young adults. Carving space between meals in the afternoon, the brand delivers on its main functional benefit: providing energy without compromising on taste.
As the long-standing category leader, Red Bull has benefited from – and outpaced – the continued growth seen in the Energy category. Red Bull has evolved in terms of ingredients and flavours, consistently adding to the core
offering. Zero-sugar versions in 2020 promise to taste like the original, and the brand is keeping things fresh with its seasonal flavour launches (e.g. pomegranate and dragon fruit).
All of this points to a broader macro trend within beverages towards ‘Better For You Functionality’. Fuelled by so much information, consumers are seeking out the next way to maximise function (in this case, energy) but with a story.
Similarly in the UK, where the brand gained +2% penetration points, the brand relaunched their “Zero” range, with a new formulation, winning 1 million new shoppers in its first year of launch.
Red Bull stands out from competitors by portraying a sociable and fun beverage: in fact, 1 in 4* Red Bull drinking occasions are because it is “fun to drink”.
Continuing its efforts to keep the category younger and stay relevant, collaborations in industries aligned with GenZ – such as gaming – continue to grow in popularity, with Red Bull’s longstanding involvement with the e-sports /streaming scene. Fundamentally, Energy Drinks and gaming go hand and hand: 1 in 10* occasions occur when consumers are gaming, and recent innovations aim to provide gamers with the energy and nutrition needed for those long gaming sessions.
*Source: Worldpanel US Beverage Consumption panel
From the Top 20 most chosen brands Online, the average amount of CRPs coming from the channel is 7%. However, there are four brands which get over 10% of their CRPs from the Online channel, and leading the way is L’Oréal Paris. The brand is sixth in the ranking, with 18% of CRPs occurring Online.
Since 2015, the brand has seen its Online CRPs increase three-fold, growing from nine million to 32 million in 2021. At the same time the proportion of brand choices made Online has increased from 6.7% to 18.4%.
The fact L’Oréal Paris is leading the way is no surprise. Parent manufacturer, L’Oréal has been targeting the channel for the past few years, and the beauty manufacturer expects 50% of its sales to come from ecommerce by 2023.
A big part of this success is due to the brand’s performance in Mainland China, which represents 82% of all its Online CRPs.
In this market, L’Oréal Paris has seen success with digital try-ons: they have the dual benefit of helping customers from an education perspective (i.e. helping customers find the
right product) and also in terms of personalisation, creating informed customer journeys and personalised product recommendations.
The brand has also built up a solid ecosystem of advocates and social sellers, jumping onto trending topics such as clean beauty and simplified skincare. Their perceived relevance increases further when we consider their use of influencers: they frequently create co-branded campaigns, relying on the popularity of celebrities to drive brand recognition and popularity.
These marketing efforts are also supported by their product offering. Their products take consumer segmentation into account, meaning they offer multiple products targeted to different age groups. This means they can appeal to the whole market, which is bolstered by their commitment to innovation and R&D from an investment perspective, leaving them in a strong position to appeal to all customers.
There is a decision point in every FMCG purchase; a point at which the shopper decides to buy one brand instead of another.
Brand Footprint is an annual ranking revealing which brands are winning at that moment of truth, using the Consumer Reach Points measure. This measures a brand’s strength in terms of the number of times brands are chosen by shoppers.
The data used to calculate the Brands of the Decade is from 10 years of Brand Footprint rankings.
Brand Footprint only covers consumer brands; retailers’ own-label brands are not included. Brands listed include all variants, categories and formats that sit within them – for instance Pantene includes all of its shampoo, conditioner, hair treatment, hairspray and hair oil products. Brands sold under different names in different countries are considered as individual brands – for instance Tide and Ace. However, for brands with a name that has been directly translated into a local language, for example Mr Muscle and Mr Músculo, both are counted as the same brand.
Criteria of eligibility for a brand to appear in the Global ranking
Only global brands are analysed to create the global Top 50 Ranking. To be considered as global, a brand must be available in at least two continents and above 1% Penetration. Data collected from Egypt, Japan, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and UAE is not included in the global ranking, and therefore if a brand is present in any of these markets plus only one other continent it will not be considered global.
The complete ranking comprises five global FMCG sectors – Beverages, Food, Dairy, Health & Beauty, and Homecare – tracked by consumer purchase panels. Non-barcoded Fresh Food, Batteries and Pet Food are not included in the global ranking. All data relates to purchases brought into the home to be used or consumed there.
Brand Footprint is a Kantar initiative.
Thanks to our partnerships we have been able to offer countries outside of the Kantar footprint
Data for Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia and Sweden was provided by GfK
Data for the USA was provided by IRI
Data for Japan was provided by Intage
Kantar in collaboration with CTR in China
Explore the data
You can access this year’s Brand Footprint data for all markets and sectors online. Learn more about your brand’s global footprint and the most chosen brands in your sector and market.
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