Corporate Eye

10 Most Influential Brands in Canada

canada flagWe often hear about the most influential brands in the United States, the United Kingdom, and the EU5, but what are the most influential brands in Canada? According to a survey of internet users by Ipsos Reid and the Institute of Communication Agencies, digital brands lead the way.

Emarketer explains that the study asked internet users in Canada to rate brands based on five criteria: engagement, presence, trustworthiness, leading edge, and corporate citizenship. The top 10 most influential brands according to Internet users in Canada are:

  1. Google
  2. Microsoft
  3. Apple
  4. Facebook
  5. Walmart
  6. VISA
  7. YouTube
  8. Tim Hortons
  10. Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC)

50% of the brands in the list of the top 10 most influential brands in Canada are digital and technology companies. With that in mind, it’s interesting to compare these results to the list of the most valuable brands in the world according to Brandz. In 2012, 40% of the top 10 most valuable brands were in the digital and technology industry:

  1. Apple
  2. IBM
  3. Google
  4. McDonald’s
  5. Microsoft
  6. Coca-Cola
  7. Marlboro
  8. AT&T
  9. Verizon
  10. China Mobile

And let’s take a look at how the most influential brands in Canada compare to the best global brands of 2012 according to Interbrand. In this list, 50% of the top ten brands are in the digital and technology industries:

  1. Coca-Cola
  2. Apple
  3. IBM
  4. Google
  5. Microsoft
  6. GE
  7. McDonald’s
  8. Intel
  9. Samsung
  10. Toyota

One thing is certain, digital and technology brands are powerful and influential both around the world and in key markets across the globe. Technology is a vital part of consumers’ lives these days, so it’s not surprising to see so many technology and digital brands in these lists of leading brands. However, it is interesting to see the same brands appear on these lists again and again, year after year, in varied regions, and among diverse audience segments.

These are the brands to watch, but just as we’ve watched them rise to the powerful positions of consumer influence that they hold now, most lifecycles follow the traditional bell curve, which means the good times can only last for so long. Some of these brands are already on the decline in terms of sales, but their power and influence hasn’t waned significantly yet.

One thing is for certain, brand marketers should keep an eye on these brands to benchmark now and in the future. They hold the positions you want your brand to hold. Learn from them.

Image: Rob Blissett

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.