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09/09/2020 - Views

Brands Rediscover Consumer Trust with Out of Home

As consumers, workplaces, schools and entire sectors of the economy start to return to pre Lockdown conditions - even the revival of retail and the return of feel-good activities giving Britain’s wider economy a much-needed boost – audiences are very much seeking reassurance and trust around brands as part of the general reset.

Brand recovery is crucial to sustain a business revival and with people generally resuming out of home activities, one key measure of consumers emerging from lockdown is trust in media channelsOut of Home was one that recorded the largest increase in consumer trust (+14% to 57%), reflecting the many brand, charity and Government messages that relayed vital messaging at a time of great need. 

With heritage that dates all the way back to the 1830s, OOH has certainly adapted to change over centuriesbeing used by some of the world’s most recognisable brands to build trust with audiences through hardship. It is well recorded that over successive periods of recession, studies have shown that brands who maintained or increased their advertising budgets achieved greater increases in profit than brands who did cut budget. A key factor in this is an environment and perception of trust.  

Although we live in an internet driven world, around 22.6% of UK adults do not trust online adverts and use ad blockers. Many more us will skirt around unsuitable ads or those lacking context to a very personal experience. 

OOH on the other hand exists very publicly. Research shows this itself makes messages more trusted; the Government’s extensive use of OOH to deliver key lockdown advice and directives is an example of this. People are +17% more likely to feel confident in a brand using OOH, +15% more likely to feel it’s a successful brand and +14% more likely to trust that brand (Work Research). 

Further research shows that audiences welcome the advertising in OOH and 40% of people are more positive towards OOH compared to 16% for online ads. Our own Talon Benchmark data also demonstrates an average uplift of +26% in trust when OOH is part of the media mix, measured for key brand campaigns using OOH. 

Media fragmentation and the effects of our increasingly polarized society has delivered a slow decline in trust and favourability towards advertising. Both brands and media environments need to rebuild consumer reassurance, not least the online community around brand safety.

What OOH can truly offer, according to WARC and the IPA, is a share of successful brands’ budgets and a +20% incidence to report very large business effects, versus those brands which did not use the channel. 

It is especially in times like these that brands returning to advertising and using OOH can deliver vital reassurance for audiences navigating their lives back to normal. It is time to ensure our advertising strategies reflect current issues and deliver branding and trust as part of the fight back to win the trust of those faced with transformational realities.