Below I have conducted a list detailed the brands I feel have proved to be the best and worst of 2018.
Marks and Spencer
Despite their delicious food, Marks and Spencer have made my list of the top brands of 2018 due to the fact that they have continued to upkeep their strong brand personality – completely encapsulating what it means to be British. From their annual heart-wrenching Christmas advert to their tasty snack, Marks and Spencer have proved that they have the goods to steal our hearts but what about their ethics? Marks and Spencer have a continuous goal to innovate and promote change within their company. Moreover, the introduction of Plan A/2025 is their way of improving their Corporate Social Responsibility by ensuring they have a positive impact on the planet in everything they do.
Lush has been a brand that has always been known for providing a high-quality cruelty-free approach to cosmetics and 2018 has proven to be no different. Lush as a company has based their brand off of their core values, with their focus this year being on ethical buying, company tax policy, and the Lush people. As a consumer, it can be difficult to know where the products, we buy have been sourced but Lush has made a commitment to ensure that every product has been sourced ethically. Moreover, a company’s employees are fundamental for its success, and Lush’s focus on providing the best place to work is admirable. Lastly, their approach to tax policies means they are not skipping out on any taxed owned. This is an increasing problem – it was reported that Ed Sheeran paid more tax in the UK than Amazon! Therefore, the knowledge that Lush is paying the correct tax in every country is one of my reasons for their position on this list.
With the need for Corporate Social Responsibility for our environment increasingly growing – it has become vital for a company to ensure they are doing all they can to help the cause. Tesla was almost unknown 10 years ago and is now the leading electronic car manufacturing company in the world! Their impressive growth is based on their companies ethos in providing zero emissions, with a focus on safety, in order to change the world’s perceptions of the electronic car. Although, at the moment they are selling cars, there is no limit to what this company could achieve with their technologies and innovation.
Despite providing the most used social media platform in the world, 2018 proved an issue for Zuckerberg’s company when it emerged that user’s data was being harvested by a third party without their knowledge. The scandal has reported to have affected 87 million users with about 1.1 million being from the UK – with Facebook admitting that it was aware of Cambridge Analytica’s presence on the platform. Zuckerberg is set to testify in court and the company are implementing changes – however it is reported that although this scandal affected so many people, it has had little effect on the number of users of the site. There is no assurance that this hiccup will stop any slipups in the future if they receive no repercussions.
Uber has been subject to a number of different scandals, from losing its license to operate in London, to trying to cover up their cyber-attack that affected millions of users. However, I believe the most monumental scandal surfaced this year when it was reported that a multitude of sexual harassment complaints of their drivers had never been reported. They now have to pay £1.5 million in the court settlement capping a damaging year for both its bottom line and its consumer trust.
Nestle is one of the biggest confectionary providers worldwide – however, this year they fell victim to a scandal reporting that they made false claims on their baby milk formulas. Its reported the company was found to be misleading customers with false nutritional information and violating advertisement policies. I think that the fact that this involves the health of new-born babies makes this scandal even more impactful for the brand and harms it’s already tarnished reputation in baby products.