A few years ago, most people would have considered fashion and luxury brands as the ‘coolbrands’, mostly because they were the most innovative, aspirational, and connected best with people’s emotions and innermost feelings.

Today however, tech brands appear to have stolen that cool spot from the fashion and lifestyle brands. In fact, many tech brands like Netflix, Instagram and others are actually selling a Lifestyle, not just a physical utility.

Little wonder then that in the 2016/17 list of annual CoolBrands in the UK, 11 tech companies, many of whom weren’t even in existence pre-2000, made the Top 20, with Apple topping the list for the 5th year in a row!

This may be one reason why many tech startups become so successful so quickly these days – because they have that ‘cool’ factor that connects with humans so deeply. So much so that tech founders, the former nerds and geeks, are now the new rockstars and celebrities!

Check out the top 20 CoolBrands for 2016/17, voted for, based on their perceived Authenticity, Desirability, Innovation and Originality.

1. Apple

Apple CoolBrands 2016/172. Glastonbury

Glastonbury CoolBrands 2016/17

3. Netflix

Netflix CoolBrands 2016/17

4. Aston Martin

Aston Martin CoolBrands 2016/175. Nike

Nike CoolBrands 2016/176. Instagram

Instagram CoolBrands 2016/177. Spotify

Spotify CoolBrands 2016/17

8. Adidas

Adidas CoolBrands 2016/17

9. PlayStation

Playstation CoolBrands 2016/1710. Google

Google CoolBrands 2016/1711. YouTube

Youtube CoolBrands 2016/1712. Airbnb

Airbnb CoolBrands 2016/1713. Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen CoolBrands 2016/1714. Bose

Bose CoolBrands 2016/1715. M.A.C.

MAC CoolBrands 2016/1716. Sonos

Sonos CoolBrands 2016/1717. Harley-Davidson

Harley-Davidson CoolBrands 2016/1718. GoPro

GoPro CoolBrands 2016/1719. Chanel

Chanel CoolBrands 2016/1720. Ray-Ban

Ray-Ban CoolBrands 2016/17

The UK’s annual CoolBrands are chosen by an Expert Council of 36 influencers and a nationally representative sample of 2,500 British adults. Brands do not apply or pay to be considered, while The Centre for Brand Analysis independently administers the selection process, after considering thousands of brands from over 50 sectors.

From the thousands of brands initially identified, a shortlist of 1,300 was scored by two separate groups of voters:

  • The independent and voluntary Expert Council, comprising 36 influencers. Council members individually award each brand a rating from 1-10 and were not allowed to score brands with which they had a direct association or were in direct competition to.
  • A nationally representative sample of 2,500 British adults accessed via a Lightspeed GMI online panel.

The opinions of the Expert Council (85%) and the British public (15%) were combined and the best performing brands awarded CoolBrands status.

Because “Cool” is subjective and personal, neither set of voters were given a definition but were asked to bear in mind the following factors, which research has shown are inherent in a ‘Cool Brand’ –

  1. Authenticity
  2. Desirability
  3. Innovation
  4. Originality