The apps & social platforms industry has an average Brand Intimacy Quotient of 25.5, below the cross-industry average of 38.3. Spotify remains in first place in the industry, and Apple Music has replaced TikTok in second place. Consumer preference for Instagram and Snapchat has increased, whereas preference for Pinterest and Twitter has decreased.
Apps & social platforms ranked 10th this year, the same ranking as in our 2020 study. The industry continues to perform better with men than with women and with younger consumers versus older ones. The category has further improved across the “can’t live without” and “daily usage” measures, which suggests many continue to rely on apps & social platform brands, even as sheltering in place measures have been lifted.
Ritual has overtaken enhancement as the dominant archetype for apps & social platforms because users likely increased their regular interactions with these brands during the pandemic. The category increased its bonding performance during the pandemic by 17 percent. This suggests that users were able to deepen their relationships and move into a more advanced stage of intimacy over the past year.
Enhancement, the previously dominant industry archetype, dropped 4 percent to be replaced by ritual, which rose slightly. The industry improved across multiple measures, including daily usage and how essential users report the brand is. Spotify now leads among women as well as men; in the 2020 study, Spotify led only among men. Apple Music leads among users aged 45–64 and those with high income.
Comparing the top two apps & social platform brands, Spotify and Apple Music, we see Spotify exhibiting stronger archetype associations in all categories except nostalgia. In terms of stages, Apple Music has significantly more users in bonding, while Spotify leads in fusing.
* This is a ranked sub-brand. We share its industry performance. Given its similar profile, see parent brand for overall ranking.