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Microsoft Named 2020’s Most Conscious Brand Ahead Pfizer, Google, Amazon

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The logo of French headquarters of American multinational technology company Microsoft, is pictured outside on March 6, 2018 in Issy-Les-Moulineaux, a Paris’ suburb. / AFP PHOTO / GERARD JULIEN (Photo credit should read GERARD JULIEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Technology giant Microsoft has been named 2020’s Most Conscious Brand, ahead of Pfizer, Google and Amazon after it emerged top in a poll of the 100 most Conscious Brands of 2020.

In a year where brands have been encouraged to offer more empathy as the Covid-19 pandemic gripped the world, Microsoft topped the global survey of 9,000 consumers rating 223 brands in the U.K., U.S. and China, Adweek reports.

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The inaugural list was announced by Wolff Olins and Hall & Partners and involved brands being rated across six criteria that were considered crucial to being described as a “Conscious Brand:” empathy, reform, multisensory, collectivism and morality.

Second on the list was mental wellness company Headspace, followed by YouTube, Pfizer, Google and Netflix respectively. The rest of the top 10 international brands list was made up of Amazon, Disney, AstraZeneca and Pixar in that order.

Microsoft came out on top, having scored highly for the important role it was found to play in people’s lives through its video platform Microsoft Teams, which helped workers and businesses cope with remote working during the pandemic restrictions. The company also leveraged its technology to support research into the virus and donated billions of dollars to nonprofits and diverse-owned businesses last year, it claimed.

Shifting consumers’ value

Sairah Ashman, global CEO at Wolff Olins, said 2020 saw “a dramatic shift” in how consumers value what was seen to be essential.

“Unsurprisingly, it’s the brands that helped us to stay connected and healthy or keep boredom at bay that we’ve come to rely on and value the most,” Ashman said in a statement. “Although the success of a brand like Headspace going globally mainstream points to the rise of a more conscious brand and consumer.”

Headspace ranked highly during a year in which greater emphasis seemed to be placed on mental wellness with a platform that offered meditation and mindfulness activities. YouTube was cited for its storytelling and education abilities, while Pfizer scored highly for its work in delivering one of the vaccinations.

The U.S. list was led by Google, followed by Glossier, Microsoft, Headspace and Amazon.

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