May 30, 2024 - Business

Corporate reputations with staying power

A bar chart that displays the number of times companies appeared in the Top 10 of the Axios/Harris 100 ranking from 2014 to 2024. Amazon leads with 9 appearances, followed by Samsung with 7, and Patagonia, Publix, and Wegmans each with 6. Apple and Costco appeared five times, Honda and Disney appeared four times and Chick-Fil-A appeared three times.
Data: Axios Harris Poll 100; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

The reputations of Amazon, Samsung and Patagonia have the most staying power, according to this year's Axios Harris Poll 100 rankings.

Why it matters: Each company continues to see high marks in areas of "vision," "growth" and "products and services."

  • This implies that consumers are most concerned with the trajectory of a company and the services it provides when gauging corporate reputation.

Yes, but: Even the top-ranking companies have seen a slip in reputation scores over the past decade.

  • Amazon has appeared within the top 10 of the reputation rankings the most, scoring the highest in 2017 with an "excellent" score of 86.3.
    • Since then, the company's reputation score has dropped nine points, landing it at No. 16 on this year's list.
  • Samsung's reputation peaked in 2015 with a score of 82, and it is currently ranked No. 10 with a score of 78.8.
  • Patagonia held the No. 1 spot in 2023 and 2021 and came in at No. 8 this year with a "very good" score of 79.1.

Zoom out: Other mainstays include Sony, UPS and USAA, which have appeared within the top 10 at least three times.

The big picture: Sustaining a strong corporate reputation has become more challenging with each year, says John Gerzema, CEO of the Axios Harris poll.

  • 17 companies had an "excellent" reputation score in 2017 and 10 in 2021, but this year there are only two — Nvidia and 3M.
  • 71% of all companies in this year's rankings saw declines because of loss of trust, character and ethics.

What they're saying: "When asked why, people told us companies aren't doing enough to keep prices fair from inflation and are focusing too much on cultural issues," Gerzema said. "Ultimately, [the reputation decline] is based on what a company does rather than what it says."

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