Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Apple Brand Ascendent, While Yahoo’s Is in Marketing Retrograde

Yahoo — which has been trying to right itself after a series of missteps and an ever-weakening business — took another direct hit yesterday, as it got dinged in a high-profile annual survey of the Top 100 global brands.

According to Interbrand’s “Best Global Brands 2011,” Yahoo dropped 11 percent in brand value — calculated as $4.4 billion — in the year in which it fell from No. 66 to No. 76.

Way to go, Yahoo marketing! I think that pricey “It’s You” advertising campaign might not have worked.

Meanwhile, Apple broke into the Top 10 list for the first time, vaulting from No. 17 to No. 8, rising 58 percent in brand value to $33.5 billion.

Other tech companies did pretty well in the Interbrand poll — which is the gold standard of the state of brand health with consumers — especially compared to Yahoo (whose brand value high was in 2007 and which is now back at 2001 levels).

For example: IBM kept its No. 2 spot, with brand value rising eight percent; Microsoft fell three percent, but maintained its No. 3 place; Google stayed at No. 4, up 27 percent; and Amazon rose 32 percent and reached No. 26 from No. 36.

Even troubled companies prevailed over Yahoo’s twin declines: Hewlett-Packard held on to its No. 10 slot, with brand value up six percent; Research In Motion dropped only five percent and two slots, from No. 54 to No. 56; and Nokia fell from No. 8 to No. 14 and saw its brand value decline 15 percent.

Most interesting, perhaps, about the 12-year-old survey: Six of the Top 10 brands are tech companies.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik