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Consumer insights agency, KLA, reveals the results of the 4th Quarterly Buzz report

KLA, the exclusive partner for YouGov in the sub-Saharan region, proudly presents the fourth edition of the Quarterly Buzz, marking the completion of a full year of tracking the brands with the most ‘Buzz’ in the market.

The Quarterly Buzz leverages the YouGov BrandIndex tool, a dynamic tool that continuously measures public perception across over 200 brands in South Africa. In August 2023, KLA introduced the eighth sector, the General Retailer category, encompassing brands offering home décor and furniture, included in this release. The BrandIndex tool tracks the top 10 performing brands across sectors, highlighting the top five brands within each category.

Operating on a comprehensive set of 16 metrics across the marketing funnel, the BrandIndex tool's Buzz metric takes centre stage. This metric evaluates consumer perception, gauging whether individuals have encountered positive or negative information about a brand in the preceding two weeks. With performance scores ranging from +100 to -100, a net score emerges, offering a view of a brand's performance relative to its competitors. These scores are collected over a three-month period, forming the basis for the Quarterly Buzz results, with the latest results being measured from October 1 to December 31, 2023.

The top performing brands across all sectors in Q4 are:

Consumer insights agency, KLA, reveals the results of the 4th Quarterly Buzz report

The Food, Groceries, and Consumables sector continues to maintain a strong presence in the top 10, with four of the top 10 brands from this sector. There are significant declines in Buzz performance across all four brands in this sector, reflective of the broader environment. While this dip in performance has intensified in Q4, it is important to note the contextual challenges within this market. Looking back on 2023, consumers have been negatively impacted by an ongoing cost of living crisis, resulting in a financially strained consumer that has shifted buying behaviour.

While these constraints have not eased, it has resulted in consumers altering behaviour to align with circumstances. With greater positivity moving into 2024, consumers' intentional spending habits continue, with a drive towards product value. This has resulted in consumers proactively searching for lower-costing products without compromising on quality.

Takealot continues to lead the pack, but noteworthy declines continue in this quarter across 14 of the 16 metrics across the marketing funnel. Vodacom, a new entrant in Q3, climbs the rank to eighth position in this quarter, with Engen once again making the top 10 since the Q1 read. With a new sector read, new entrant, Mr Price Home ranks in sixth position resulting in PicknPay and Clicks slipping in rank, facing a decline in Buzz.

In the latest report, specific brands’ performance reflects dynamic trends in the South African market.

Checkers: Delivering value and convenience

With customers feeling the pinch of a depressed market, Checkers has drawn customers' attention towards lower pricing, fuelled by a rewards programme that highlights consumer benefit in a clear and easy-to-understand manner. With this, the brand has achieved great gains in driving accessibility and convenience through their delivery programme, supporting the needs of a more premium market.

Vodacom: Continued adaption to evolving consumer needs

Vodacom has continued to leverage its offerings to deliver tangible value to its customers. Despite the significant impact of load shedding on businesses across the country, Vodacom has aimed towards building resistance against this through the implementation of systems that have supported longevity during prolonged outages. The network operator has also rolled out new products supporting the development of emerging technologies that enhance user experience.

The brand further successfully extended its Black Friday deals, highlighting commitment to supporting South Africans with value offerings to alleviate financial strain. This, coupled with a move towards aiming to meet consumers' holistic lifestyle needs further entrenches the brand into consumers' lives and drives meeting consumer needs in an ever-evolving market.

Engen: Supporting the community

While Engen has received buzz in the market for its takeover by Dutch-Swiss owners, Vitol Energies, its associated news to ramping up Black-owned petrol stations by the competition commission has been welcomed. Beyond this, the brand has extended its helping hand to communities within the South Durban Basin in light of financial struggles and donating towards the Reach for a Dream Foundation, highlighting the brand's commitment to the South African people.

With macro-environmental factors continuing to shape consumer behaviour, there is an increased importance that consumers place on value for money in a tough economic environment.

Sector specific results for Q4:

Consumer insights agency, KLA, reveals the results of the 4th Quarterly Buzz report

Sector-specific results for Q4 showcase a relatively stable top five within each sector, with a few new entrants across three of the eight sectors tracked – notably, Caltex, Markham and Momentum in their respective categories. Mr Price Home, Makro and PEP Home feature as the top three within the new General Retailer sector.

For more information about the Quarterly Buzz visit www.kla.co.za or contact az.oc.alk@seiriuqne.

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