A new study reveals the continued decline of global brand strength among consumers worldwide, with U.S. brands losing ground to their European and Asian counterparts. The brand power scores are based on consumer response regarding three key variables—“familiarity;” favorability (“really like”); and “advocacy”—on a survey conducted by GfK Roper Consulting.

Among the top 15 global brands in this year’s study, five of six U.S. brands on the list witnessed power declines including a number of American icons such as Coca-Cola, Colgate, McDonald’s, Nike and Pepsi. Disney is the only U.S. brand in the top 15 that experienced a surge in brand power.

Disney also owns the greatest annual brand power increase among all American brands in the study. Other top gainers this year include BMW with the biggest power jolt, Sony, Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, and Nestle. Though they’ve yet to break into the top 15 global brands overall, U.S.-based Microsoft, National Geographic and Google were also among the top ten brand power gainers this year.

While the steepest drop felt among all 51 brands included in the study was European-based electronics giant Philips, seven of the ten brands with the largest declines were U.S. based. The ten brands suffering the worst power drains from largest to smallest decline were Philips, Coca-Cola, Kodak, Gillette, Colgate, McDonald’s, Panasonic, Nike, Sony-Ericsson and Ford.

Three U.S. icons (Kodak, Gillette, and Motorola) were bumped from the top 15 global power brands, replaced by two European brands (BMW and Mercedes-Benz) and one from Asia (Honda).

“While these findings are a bit unsettling for U.S. brands, it’s not too late for them to take action,” says Jennifer James, senior consultant with GfK Roper Consulting. “U.S. icons can take a page from the up-and-comers like Google and Apple whose Brand Power scores are on the rise. By giving consumers the
opportunity to directly engage themselves in the brand experience, these companies are realizing significant success.”

  2007 Power Brands
1 Sony (Asia)
2 Coca-Cola (U.S.)
3 Nokia (Europe)
4 Nestle (Europe)
5 Pepsi (U.S.)
6 Colgate (U.S.)
7 McDonald’s (U.S.)
8 Nike (U.S.)
9 BMW (Europe)
10 Samsung (Asia)
11 Honda (Asia)
12 Panasonic (Asia)
13 Mercedes-Benz (Europe)
14 Philips (Europe)
15 Disney (U.S.)