Digital last for trust

By Teamspirit on Wednesday, 14 June 2017

A recent report from the CMO Council on ‘How Brands Annoy Fans’ has revealed that almost three quarters of consumers would respond more positively to ads running in traditional advertising channels than social media.

In fact, the survey found that social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter were the least trusted by consumers in the top five media channels.

It seems the feeling is largely rooted in the rise of offensive posts and fake news stories infiltrating these sites, undermining their overall validity. It’s hard to miss the scepticism many now approach their feeds with, and unsurprisingly the poorly censored content is causing 60% to turn to alternative, more well-known sources and established media channels.

The knock-on effect is that simply by being in visual proximity to negative content, brand’s messages are being viewed unfavourably by association. Nearly half of those polled said they would reconsider interacting with brands or even boycott products if they found their ads alongside offensive content.

Clearly, careful thought now needs to be given to the digital context in which ads are positioned in order not to damage brand perceptions. Many companies are beginning to speak out on the issue, such as P&G and Vodafone, and we expect many more will follow.

The challenge of building trusting, transparent consumer relationships is especially paramount within the financial services industry, and we will be monitoring to see how brands and platforms respond to strengthen the legitimacy of social advertising.

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