Innovative, premium, and purpose-driven French brands become beacons of growth
2019 period was a tumultuous time in France, with climate change, political unrest, and constant technological disruption shifting the landscape rapidly for French brands. During this time, more has become expected of brands and this looks set to continue in 2020. They expected to be responsible, show purpose and behave ethically in all aspects of their activities. They are expected to support French suppliers. They are expected to be adaptive, technologically advanced, and innovative. They are also expected to be experiential, meaningful and inspiring. But if this year’s BrandZ France Top 50 list shows anything, it’s that navigating change creatively while embracing challenges and stepping up to address issues (for example, environmental challenges) can generate substantial brand growth, longevity and equity. The strongest French brands of 2020 are those which are building the future, living their values, and talking to consumers in inclusive, authentic ways.
Case in point, Europcar, one of the new joiners for 2020, ranked 38—which has added $1,153 million in brand value to the auto sector. Europcar has been busy focusing on innovation, becoming a platform for mobility, while also making international acquisitions and growing its brand internationally.
France’s most successful brands for 2020 have also shown the importance of global reputation, presence and prestige. The most successful brands in this year’s list owe a lot of their strength to global expansion and brand awareness, which has helped them navigate challenging domestic headwinds. France’s stable of luxury and premium brands are the leaders of BrandZ France 2020, showing the way forward by creating compelling brand experiences, embracing their iconic French codes while moving them forward with digital marketing and e-commerce, and culturally relevant brand experiences.
Little wonder that France remains one of Western Europe’s strongest markets. French consumer confidence re-approached its post-2008 peak in September 2019, rising 0.3 percent in the third quarter of 2019. It was boosted by consumer spending and President Emmanuel Macron’s €10 billion package of tax cuts and other 2018 stimulus measures, which have also assuaged unemployment fears. Unemployment fell by 55,900 in the third quarter of 2019. (Although it should be noted that economists expect growth to slow in 2020.)