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Alien, Impinj, and Motorola Top RFID Update Rankings

Research released today identifies the top 20 most recognized RFID companies, and the top 10 perceived to have the best technology and to be the best marketed, as identified by RFID users and providers worldwide. RFID marketing has lost some effectiveness since the previous study, but other sources of influence are growing.
Jan 12, 2009This article was originally published by RFID Update.

January 12, 2009—RFID users and prospects say they are less likely to use and be influenced by vendor marketing materials than they were a few years ago. Despite this resistance, users also say Alien Technology, Impinj, and Motorola are the vendors who do the best job of getting their marketing messages across. These are among the key findings of two major new research reports on RFID marketing effectiveness and brand leadership that were released today by RFID Update and Burnell Reports.

"Among other key findings, the research shows RFID vendors would be well served by adopting an 'Influence the Influencers' marketing strategy. That is, market to the RFID sales channel," said RFID Update editor Will Smith. "As traditional marketing mediums are declining in effectiveness, prospective RFID users are increasingly relying on channel and media sources to help form their opinions of RFID vendors."

The reports, the 2009 RFID Brand Report and the 2009 Marketing Strategies Report, are the only objective studies of how different marketing methods, events and communications themes influence RFID prospects, users, integrators and producers. They completely update the original 2006 RFID Marketing Strategies Report, which remained the only study of marketing and brand effectiveness in the RFID industry until today's reports were released.

The 2009 RFID Brand Report lists the 20 most recognized RFID companies around the world, along with a score of how widely they are recognized and how that recognition has changed since the first ranking in 2006. The 40-page report has 39 graphics that show specifically how end users and channel companies rank RFID vendors for recognition, technology strength and marketing prowess, with separate results reported for North America, Europe and Asia plus the overall worldwide results.

Alien is the most-recognized RFID provider worldwide, Impinj is considered to have the best technology, and Motorola was cited as the best-marketed company in the industry. Results are based on more than 500 survey responses from RFID users, prospects, integrators and technology providers around the world. Eight of the 10 most recognized RFID leaders had their recognition rankings decline from levels measured in the 2006 study. There was also considerable turnover among the best-known RFID brands, with some clear trends among declining brands. The report also includes empirical data and analysis about how brand influences RFID purchasing decisions.

Building a brand has become more challenging in recent years, according to findings in the 2009 Marketing Strategies Report, which focuses on the effectiveness of advertising and marketing tactics and messages. It includes specific data about how much respondents plan to use vendor promotional materials, research reports, webinars, conferences, case studies, publications, websites, newsletters and other information sources.

"This information is mission critical for competitors in the industry and is absolutely in line with key market message considerations ABI has been communicating with clients," said Michael Liard, RFID & Contactless research director for ABI Research, who previewed an advance copy. "The methodology is sound, and there is a great mix of respondents, which also increases the validity."

Data is presented for respondents in different geographic regions and for major demographic groups, including resellers, systems integrators and other firms in the distribution channel, end users, newcomers to the industry and those who plan to purchase RFID systems within a year.

The effectiveness of vendor marketing has declined for most of these groups, with the exception of channel professionals, who are the most receptive to vendor communications. End users rely more on independent sources of information for forming opinions about vendors and brands.

The reports provide specific recommendations about how vendors can improve their communications and make informed decisions about how to allocate marketing resources. A checklist of RFID marketing best practices based on research data is also included.

"There is a lot of RFID market research out there, but these findings are unique because they are the only reports that measure the impact of RFID marketing and branding," said John Burnell, principal consultant at Burnell Reports, which co-produced the research. "They give marketers the specific insight needed to guide decisions about messaging and the marketing mix."

Executive summaries for each report are available free (here and here). The purchase price of $795 includes both reports and the RFID marketing best practices checklist. They are available for immediate purchase online at www.rfidupdatestore.com. Custom reports and demographic analysis is also available. To receive the free executive summaries or more information about the reports or additional services, contact RFID Update at research@rfidupdate.com or +1 216-571-2319.
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