Camera company Lumix comes out top in terms of online reputation, with Morrisons, Lenovo, Weetabix and usual favorites Virgin Atlantic winning the sector battles, according to the most recent Kaizo Advocacy Index, a bi-annual audit of online reputation

The index analyzes digital news and social media outlets to rank UK household names including supermarkets, cameras, airlines, breakfast cereals and computer manufacturers. Qualitative results were cross-checked with new quantitative research, to both qualify the methodology and also look at the importance of online recommendations in terms of actual purchasing behavior.

Between 31 percent and 38 percent of people say their purchasing behavior is affected by what they see on social media, especially Facebook. And, for the majority, good news travels fast, with more than a third of Facebook users saying they are more likely to share positive news about a brand compared to 22 percent who would share negative news. In addition, 28 percent of Facebook users had posted a negative comment and 40 percent a positive comment in the last six months.

Rhodri Harries, managing director of Kaizo, says: “Lumix came out top overall and in the camera sector which was an overwhelmingly positive category, with reviews influencing strongly what is covered and what people share.

“The brands that are faring well are the ones that take recommendations seriously and do all they can to influence them. Whether creating a consistent positive news flow, focusing on review sites, being creative and visual, and ultimately, involving customers and commentators, there isn’t a one size fits all approach. To win recommendations, brands need to be involved in consistent ‘conversations’ as well big bang campaigns.”

Research of 2,000 UK residents conducted by OnePoll found that for 67 percent of the UK, Google is the first place they go to search for information about brands; this is followed by online media and Facebook directly.

And, the public is caring and sharing more than ever about brands online, over a quarter (26 percent) post on websites and blogs about brands every month, with 13 percent posting every week and 4 percent posting every day. For Facebook and Twitter users these percentages, perhaps not surprisingly, increase with nearly 40 percent of Facebook users and nearly 35 percent of Twitter users posting about brands every month.