Sponsorship Ranks Highly on Trust with Today’s Consumers

There were some very interesting survey findings released recently by AC Nielsen in their Global Online Consumer Survey of more than 25,000 Internet consumers from 50 countries. What was highlighted was consumers have a very high level of ‘trust’ in sponsorship itself. A full 64 percent of consumers surveyed in April said they trust brand sponsorship, up from 49 percent in April 2007. IEG did a feature on the survey results here.

It’s an interesting result as it does underscore the key differences between sponsorship and other forms of marketing communication. Advertising is communicating to consumers in an interruption mode wheres sponsorship communicates to people in a passion mode through a property.

In terms of consumer behaviour, a property will have higher trust from a fan than a company. People are passionate about their teams and heros and have a much higher level of trust towards them. A golf fan is going to much more likely to let Tiger Woods into their house than a complete stranger. When brands associate with properties (such as Tiger Woods) they borrow some of that ‘trust’ through association.

brand-trust

Trust is something that is earned from both a brand and a property. It is a rare commodity in today’s saturated marketing environment. Certainly, these survey results do highlight that in terms of sponsorship ROI and effectiveness one of the key dimensions for sponsors that can be improved is consumer trust.

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