Our sizzling summer has put ice cream giant Ben & Jerry’s at the top of the brand popularity chart, according to the latest statistics from the UK Customer Experience Index (UKCEI).

And supermarket Sainsbury’s is struggling at the bottom with a negative score after fallout from media story.
More than a million tweets sent during July and August have been analysed for the Index using a pioneering methodology by SpectrumInsight and shared through Customer Experience Magazine.

Key positive words such as ‘favourite’ and ‘great response’ and ‘love’ have been tracked, with key negatives such as ‘hate’ and ‘rude staff’ used to rank the brands.

It’s growing use means that Twitter and its succinct 140 characters is swiftly becoming more and more representative of the overall population. The UKCEI offers a way to find out how people are feeling about a particular brand, and to compare brands.

Mark Westaby, Director of SpectrumInsight who analysed the tweets, explained: “Sainsbury’s has hit rock-bottom following an incident that occurred when a check-out person refused to serve a woman who was on her mobile phone. This generated a lot of coverage across all media – online an offline.
“What’s so interesting about the anger directed at Sainsbury’s, however, is that the majority of consumers believe the retailer should have supported their employee and not apologised to the customer who was on the phone.  Another example of how things can back-fire on a company even when they think they’ve done the right thing!”

The UK’s hot summer is reflected with a huge number of drinks and ice-cream brands on the list after generating multiple happy tweets.

Top Shop, which was top of the brands after the Christmas sales, has sunk to position 67 with a score of 11.3. As there is no indication that customer service at the shop has changed in the past few months, Mark attributes this to national mood.

“If you think about Top Shop, for instance, I can’t believe customer service has changed that much in just six months but whereas consumers love to get a bargain in the cold, dark months of January the feel-good factor appears to be much lower during a hot summer.

“This has a significant potential impact on customer experience.  For instance, should staff be trained to behave and respond differently to customers at different times of the year?  Or are the staff themselves grumpier when it’s hot and they’d rather be out enjoying the weather than stuck inside a shop handling customer returns?” questions Mark.

Several retails and service industries are battling at the bottom of the Index, including supermarkets, banks and airlines.

Things are looking up for the BBC, which is ranked 26 this time, but the NHS has nose-dived down to -18.9.

“This is a reminder that even the most venerable of establishments, companies or brands can fall very heavily and very quickly,” added Mark.

Tweets

Rude woman on her mobile phone was set straight by #sainsburyscheckoutgirl. Woman complains. #sainsburys sides with her Support your staff

Disappointed Sainsbury’s apologised to woman who was made to wait until she ended her phone call to be served. Ignoring staff is so rude

Shame on @sainsburys for not supporting their staff.  Very rude customer and the cashier was right to refuse to serve.  #GetOffThePhone

90% seem to agree using phone at checkout was rude, shame employer didn’t support staff

My tip to checkout staff: rude customer on phone? Give them half the right change & pocket the rest – they’ll never notice #sainsburys

So @sainsburys think it’s okay for customers to be rude to staff. Apologising to “phone woman” is just bad PR in my opinion. Very bad

Well done to the Sainsburys staff who would not serve the person on a mobile phone. What a rude customer
Shame on @sainsburys for apologising to #joclark. Using a phone at a checkout is rude. The assistant was in the right. Back your staff

@sainsburys No spine whatsoever. Giving out vouchers to rude customers on their phone? Crazy. Maybe next time you should support your staff

BRAND SCORE RANK
BEN & JERRY’S 100.0 1
CADBURY’S 94.4 2
SKYFALL 91.6 3
CORNETTO 89.4 4
LUCOZADE 86.9 5
PORSCHE 84.4 6
OLLY MURS 79.4 7
L’OREAL 76.2 8
PIMMS 69.5 9
DISNEY 68.1 10
FOSTER’S 62.8 11
OREOS 62.6 12
CARLING 62.6 13
FANTA 61.2 14
HEINEKEN 61.1 15
STELLA 57.8 16
TANGO 56.5 17
MAGNUM 55.8 18
RIBENA 55.6 19
PRINGLES 53.1 20
FLORA 52.1 21
BACARDI 50.0 22
REDBULL 49.6 23
BIEBER 47.5 24
NUTELLA 45.4 25
BBC 44.8 26
MCDONALD’S 44.7 27
NANDO’S 44.5 28
SPRITE 40.6 29
FIFA 40.1 30
NHS -18.9 95
HSBC -20.9 96
ASDA -21.2 97
BLACKBERRY -22.6 98
VODAFONE -23.3 99
GATWICK -26.6 100
ROYAL MAIL -28.8 101
GREATER ANGLIA -33.1 102
EASYJET -42.5 103
LONDON MIDLAND -47.3 104
SAINSBURY’S -64.2 105
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