Millward Brown’s annual BrandZ study, which was released today, points to Apple as the second most valuable brand just below Google. This is a reversal from the previous study, which found Apple ranked just above Google.

In the study, Google’s brand value was calculated at $158,843,000, while Apple came in at only $147,880,000.

Of course, this study doesn’t actually point to which company is the most valuable. Instead, Millward Brown uses a combination of financial information—including projected future sales—and customer surveys to determine how much a brand is worth—or how much of the company’s value comes from customers’ views of that company. The entire process of determing a brand’s value is explained in detail on the Millward Brown website.

Essentially, information from customer surveys is used to determine a “brand contribution” number for each company. This number refers to how likely customers are to remain loyal to a company and other similar factors. This “brand contribution” is then multiplied by certain financial figures and the resulting figure is “brand value.”

This “brand value” represents how much of the company’s overall value comes from its brand. If it sounds a non-scientific, that’s probably because it is. Still, it’s interesting to see how consumers and firms like Millward Brown rank these companies.



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49 Responses to “Google overtakes Apple as ‘most valuable brand’ of 2014 in new study”

  1. Bye Apple… Skynet is coming…

  2. Strange. What changed since last year? Google has done much at all recently.. no significant purchases, sold Motorola and sold overly expensive developer Google Glass to the public for a couple days.

  3. password92 says:

    He’s looking for attention with that rating. Purely subjective and not true IMO

  4. fredhstein says:

    Per Yahoo finance:
    AAPL counts Goodwill at $1.5B
    GOOGL counts it at $15B

    Both wisely dismiss this a ephemera.

  5. mpias3785 says:

    Odd, I tend to avoid all things Google when I can. I dislike feeling like nothing more than a source of data points that they will sell to the highest bidder.

    In my case their name has high recognition but mostly with negative connotations.

    • standardpull says:

      Your avoidance is pointless. Google owns most of the ads sent to your browsers. They own Doubleclick too. Each one lets Google build up a permanent record of your online activity. Avoiding Google is like avoiding germs. They’re unavoidable if you step into the internet. They can determine nearly everything about you. They can know you.

      • mpias3785 says:

        I use an ad blocker. I haven’t unwillingly seen an ad on my computer in a very long time. Even if I have an occasion to use to a unblocked browser, I never click on ads.

  6. Gollum says:

    This is pure lunacy. Don’t pay any attention to it.

    • tomcwatts says:

      But if it were Apple on top, like they have been for the last 3 years, then you would be advocating this kind of information, right? Don’t let your brand loyalty to a corporate entity cloud your impairment to think critically, you “bozo”.

      • Gollum says:

        Look, confirmation bias is one thing. Your premiss, suggests I am being hypocritical. However to give credibility to an out of box non-peer reviewed research is crazy. Especially since it’s based completely on a different metric.

        Example: Let’s say this apple weighs more than this orange. Putting them on a scale proves it. Now some guy comes along as says, no that’s not true. You can measure the mass of an object by how much light bounces off it, in fact the orange weighs more than the apple.

        However it’s more subjective than that and it’s difficult to pin down the value of intangible “objects” as if branding were an actual thing. My gut feeling is that their evaluation is way off, and untestable.

    • tomcwatts says:

      All of the major tech sites are reporting the exact same thing as this article, that never happens unless there is solid merit to the topic, because the journalists know there are consequences for not researching properly. I think it’s ridiculous to dismiss it as untrue or inaccurate, when we all know Apple isn’t innovating like they did with Steve around, and Google is thriving right now. Everyone here is treating this news as if it couldn’t possibly be true, that Google could never be more valuable than Apole. Things change. It’s entirely possible, and likely, that this report is accurate.

      • Gollum says:

        I have recently noticed this. So my stance will change. The original report I read stated evaluations in the 100 mill. When later I am seeing 100 bill. And that is why I had trouble with the report. If the first blog I read was wrong, then my understanding is wrong too.

  7. Victor O says:

    A note – this study has nothing to do with public perception or the overall quality of the brand. How to figure this out: ExxonMobil is in the top 50. Bank of America is in the top 100.

    This is kind of shitty non-newsworthy thing to report, and even shittier to report this without better context.

  8. Millward Brown is part of WPP, an advertising & public relations company according to Wikipedia. Samsung is one of WPP’s largest clients. Does this may explain the great disparity with Interbran’s ranking of Apple? I will have a long think about this.

  9. airmanchairman says:

    Anti-social (Glasshole) Vapour-ware (Flying Cars) do not make or enhance brand value or innovation capability.

    Until such a time as the “latter-day Oracle of Delphi” assembles a slew of shipping, real-world functionality adopted and adapted for use by cutting edge industries like Aviation, Medicine, Movie and Audio Creation, Sales and many more, reports like this are just subjective conjecture.

    AirPlay, AirDrop, AirPrint, Siri, Accessibility SDK, iBeacons, FlyOver, FindMyiPhone, in-App Audio, CoreMIDI, 64-bit mobile CPU & OS, CarPlay and the stunning new MacPro are examples of real-world innovations being progressively implemented across several industries and adding REAL value to Apple’s brand.

    As for blood sugar monitoring, I would wait a few weeks for Health Book to emerge, among other ground-breaking new technologies, from WWDC 2014.

    • tomcwatts says:

      Hahaha, this is too funny! You fanboys are actually denying solid information because you cannot accept Google is innovating more than Apple. You can deny this article all you want, because it’s not totally official. But when the official figures are released you will look like absolute morons.

  10. Jim Phong says:

    Google.. masters of bribes and accounting faking…

    • tomcwatts says:

      So by your own logic, pre this news Apple was the Apple was the master of bribes and “accounting faking” for 3 years straight? Your logic is extremely close minded.

      • thejuanald says:

        There have been a lot of people in this thread who don’t understand what they’re implying about Apple by saying that Google paid the highest price for this.

  11. tomcwatts says:

    Is anyone surprised? Apple hasn’t innovated anything worthy in the last 2 years. They have great laptop’s and desktops, but making them thinner and slightly faster every year is in no way innovative. The iPhone 5s, adds nothing innovative to the market, the 5c is an over expensive abomination. The iPad Air progressing just like the macbooks. IOS 7 is in no way innovative, it’s just an overly colourful re-skin. CarPlay, laggy, and serves no new purpose. The list goes on. Well done Google.