Canada’s most trusted brands have been released in two lists, one pre-COVID-19 pandemic and one post-pandemic, according to the University of Victoria’s Peter B. Gustavson School of Business.
The Gustavson Brand Trust Index measures the relationship between brand and performance, social equity, and trust and advocacy for brands in Canada.
The post-pandemic study was conducted in April and measured opinions from 1,050 Canadians of 105 brands, where Canada Post, Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix, and CTV News were named the most trusted brands.
But the initial 2020 study, conducted between January and February of this year, measured 7,800 Canadian consumer opinions about 342 well-known corporate and product brands across 27 categories.
This study showed that Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC), Canadian Automobile Association, Costco, Home Hardware, and Home Depot ranked as the top brands overall.
It’s important to note that trust in key institutions has been eroding over the past few years, according to Saul Kevin, dean of the Gustavson School of Business.
“The average brand trust scores for all brands surveyed in 2020 are at an all-time low,” said Saul Klein, dean of the Gustavson School of Business.
Klein said this can be attributed to the rise in consumer skepticism, with consumers growing more conscious of their purchasing habits while closely watching the values brands stand for.
“Brands that were unable to make products available to customers during the pandemic saw a decline in trust scores,” Klein said. “For example, despite the fact that Lysol and Clorox enjoyed increased demand, they lost trust among consumers due to the scarcity of their products on shelves.”
The report did show that trust in Canadian telecom companies is on the rise, after the pandemic struck.
And, millennials are less trusting compared to any other generation. They usually assign their loyalties to organizations that are proactive in solving long-standing social issues and contribute to making the world a better place.
There was also the new role of a brand’s supply chain, as the pandemic reinforced the need for brands to pay attention to their supply and demand.
“For an organization to be trusted and seen as credible, it must ensure the availability and competitiveness of its products,” the report said.