Tim Hortons named most authentic Canadian brand

Cohn & Wolfe adds Canadian consumers to its global 200-brand study for the first time.

Tim Hortons has earned the top spot on Cohn & Wolfe’s first-ever list of Canada’s most authentic brands.

The global communication agency included Canadian consumers in its fifth Authentic 100 study to assess the effect perceptions of authenticity have on shoppers across 200 global brands in 15 countries in May and June. The survey involved 15,000 consumers, 1,001 of which were Canadians.

The study defined authenticity along several measures: delivering on promises, high-quality products and services, treating customers well and protecting their privacy, honest communication and “acting with integrity.”

Tim Hortons scored 150 on an index scale, beating out Google and Canadian Tire in Canada, which both had index scores of 147.

Canada’s most authentic brands

1. Tim Hortons
2. Google
3. Canadian Tire
4. Disney
5. Amazon.com
6. WestJet
7. Campbell’s
8. Canon
9. Shopper’s Drug Mart
10. Black & Decker

Tangerine and Canada Post were the only other Canadian brands to make the top 20 in Canada.

Globally, Amazon, Apple and Microsoft took the top three podium places, respectively.

The study found that 92% of Canadian’s polled said a brand’s authenticity drives “beneficial behaviour or attitude[s] toward the brand’s business.” Just under 60% said said their purchase intent increasingly relied on perceptions of authenticity. However, only 11% feel that brands are “open and honest,” compared to the 16% in the U.S. who believe so.

“Canadians hold brands to higher standards than their peers in other western countries, yet many companies fail to deliver on consumers’ expectations,” says David Gordon, managing partner at Cohn & Wolfe Toronto, in a statement. “There’s a strong link between brand authenticity and the ability to attract and retain customers and ultimately propel business growth. The brands that top the Authenticity Index are the ones that are able to master and demonstrate the seven key attributes that build a trusting relationship with the consumer.”