Nielsen has recently surveyed consumers in 47 countries world wide. Consumers were asked to rate the credibility of thirteen types of advertising – from conventional newspaper and television ads to branded web sites and consumer-generated content.
The trust attitudes toward different forms of advertising (see table 1) reveals that consumers most trusted form of advertisement is “recommendations from other consumers”.
Table 1: Trust attitudes
In contrast to Nielsen’s survey analysis, I believe one shouldn’t separate between the form of “recommendation from consumers” and the form of “consumer opinions posted online”. Today’s consumers receive recommendations from other consumers through online formats. The success of these two forms of advertising represents the potential of online word of mouth marketing efforts.
That being said, I wish to direct our attention to the patterns found. There are cultural differences in the trust level of consumers, namely, highest trust level toward word of mouth (offline and online) among Asia Pacific countries. North America leads the potential for consumer generated media. Europeans seem prominent in their mistrust of most advertising forms.
International differences in trusting ads:
1. Over all trust of ads: (see table 2)
The Nielsen survey found Filipinos and Brazilians (67%) to be the most trusting overall of all forms of advertising, while trust among Danes (28%), Italians (32%), Lithuanians (34%) and Germans (35%) were the lowest in the world.
2. Trust in “someone else recommendation”:
It seems (see table 3) that Asia Pacific countries generate highest level of trust on others recommendations. Europeans, on the other hand are generally less likely to trust what they hear from other consumers, particularly in Denmark (62%) and Italy (64%).
3. Trust in “consumers online opinion”:
The reliability of consumer opinions posted online – also varies throughout the world (see table 4), scoring highest in North America (66%) and Asia (62%). Among individual markets (see table 5), web-based opinions such as Blogs are most trusted in South Korea (81%) and Taiwan (76%), while scoring lowest in Finland (35%).
Methodology: Nielsen survey is conducted twice-a-year among 26,486 internet users in 47 markets from Europe, Asia Pacific, the Americas and the Middle East. Among the markets covered are: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Thailand, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, UAE, United Kingdom, US and Vietnam.