Zion & Zion Study Uses Cluster Analysis to Reveal Brand Personality Groupings of Top QSRs

TEMPE, Ariz. (Nov. 10, 2020) – The market research team at Zion & Zion, a top-ranked, full-service, national marketing agency, continues their in-depth series of studies examining the brand personalities of QSR (quick service restaurant) chains. In this new study, a k-means cluster analysis of the top 26 QSRs’ brand personality dimensions was conducted, revealing five distinct clusters, or natural groupings of the different restaurant brands.

The Zion & Zion study reveals noteworthy findings for restaurant chain marketers:

  • Starbucks ended up in a cluster alone with the highest scores in Excitement, Competence and Sophistication, suggesting they have created a unique brand personality that differentiates them from other QSRs.
  • The cluster with the best overall scores included Chick-fil-A, Dairy Queen, Dunkin’ Donuts, Panera Bread, Sonic Drive-In and Wendy’s. The strategies these restaurants are employing are working to define their brands as clear, favorable and original.
  • While it may seem most desirable to be in the high-scoring cluster, creating a brand personality that differentiates you from other brands, like Starbucks has done, could be more important.

For information about all of the restaurant clusters, view the full research report here: Are All QSRs Created Equal? A K-Means Cluster Analysis

This Zion & Zion research study was based on a nationwide survey of 4,363 adults. Authors of the study are Aric Zion, MS; Thomas Hollmann, MBA, PhD; and Thomas Orr.