Research: Seventy-one Per Cent Of Brits Prefer Self Discovery For New Brands Over Advertising

Wed 22nd Aug

Research released earlier this month reveals that people are now less inclined to trust messages that are delivered via push advertising than in the past. Instead, they prefer to discover new products themselves; favouring ‘pull’ channels such as a friend’s recommendation, browsing in store, or an online search.

This comes from a study commissioned by refer-a-friend marketing platform Mention Me into trust marketing and the impact of decreasing trust in social and traditional media channels.

The research reveals that customer initiated discovery (a friend’s recommendation, online reviews, social media platform, search engines, review sites, Blogger/Influencer) trumps more traditional push forms of advertising (banner ads online, direct mail, outside billboard, Email, TV, Newspaper/PR). When asked which methods they preferred to discover a product, 71 per cent of all respondents chose self discovery, compared with 29 per cent choosing push advertising platforms. This is consistent across sectors:

The research also revealed that despite reports of the demise of the high street, when it comes to fashion and beauty people still appreciate the tangible experience of in-store above all other channels. Of respondents, In-store is 60 per cent more popular for fashion shoppers when discovering a new product than the next best discovery channel. And 37 per cent more popular for beauty shoppers.

An endorsement is a valuable tool to spark discovery. The research suggests that products that have been endorsed get an added boost, with the trust in the brand increasing alongside the recommendation. However, not all methods are equal, bought endorsements, like those made by bloggers and YouTubers languish at the bottom of the list for sources of brand discovery. Despite increasing spend by marketers, these influencers are preferred by fewer than three per cent of respondents across sectors.

“Trust is an increasingly important theme across all elements of society and marketing is no different. Trust marketing is all about thinking about how brands manage the most valuable currency they have with their customers. It’s not surprising that consumers now have a preference to discover new products from the sources they trust most, particularly personal recommendations. Running a referral programme offers brands a systematic and positive way to activate trusted pull marketing to better engage both existing and new customers in product discovery.” Andy Cockburn, CEO of Mention Me

Mention Me partnered with One Poll for this survey, who questioned 2000 UK consumers. The survey was completed 15th March 2018.