Brands + Trust: What’s stronger – hate or love? (Consumerology)

Marketers, you have work to do

Marketers, you have work to do.

Trust among consumers has headed in the wrong direction over the past five years. Marketers take special note, the slide is more pronounced among women, whom we all know are the prime decision-makers in household spending: 54% are less trusting of companies versus 42% among men, according to the latest research.

The good news is the slide isn’t deep and younger consumers are more likely to cut you some slack. In fact, most consumers still seem to like your brands and actually seem to be holding onto an innate need to love them. They want to buy as much as possible from brands they trust, according to the latest Consumerology report commissioned by Bensimon Byrne. To put the slide in perspective, fewer than one in 10 say they are “much” less trusting than they were five years ago, and a healthy 40% report they are “more” trusting of brands.

“People really want to trust brands, ” says David Herle, principal partner of The Gandalf Group, which conducted the research and prepared the report. “Virtually all consumers agree that they wish companies they patronize were as loyal back to them as they are to the brands.”

That kind of behaviour probably won’t surprise those wise marketers who have always believed that customers love loyalty and trust the most and it’s simply the brands that keep finding fresh ways to turn them off. “The Consumerology Report 21: Trust” findings run deeper, however, to explore what drives the consumer trust and how those drivers vary by gender, age and salary.

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Methodology: The report is based on a survey of 1,513 Canadians proportionate in makeup to the broader population, in English and French, between Feb. 25 and March 3. It has a margin of error of +- 2.5% 19 times out of 20.

This story originally appeared in the May 2014 issue of Marketing, available to subscribers and on the iPad newsstand.

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