Report: Trust still the key concern moving into 2020

An analysis of WARC’s Global Advertising Trends reports found changing consumer trust is the key concern

Privacy will remain high on the consumer’s agenda, as marketers look to different channels to connect with consumers.

Following an analysis of WARC’s Global Advertising Trends reports, the agency found changing consumer sentiment towards data use was a major topic of interest for practitioners this year, no matter the channel. Research shows many consumers have taken steps to limit their online footprint in light of concerns around data misuse, with 44 per cent limiting the amount of data they share online and over a quarter (27 per cent) deploying an ad blocker.

While personalisation may be a growing trend, the failure of large digital platforms to balance data privacy has undermined consumer trust. Alarmingly, 23 per cent of practitioners in Asia have have no data protection strategy in place.

While this data informs ad buying, particularly programmatically, 50 per cent of practitioners agree adtech has yet to live up to its potential, and concerns around brand safety, context and negative association abound.

June's edition of WARC's Global Ad Trends found ad growth in the social and messaging sector had halved over the year. One in five marketers intended to reduce spend on Facebook in 2020, with Twitter and Snapchat also facing the prospect of low revenue growth.

Trust in information on social media reached new lows and calls for greater regulation for tech and social media companies grow louder. Across 22 countries, half of consumers said they thought tech and social media companies currently have too much power and influence

YouTube has been criticised for its lack of action on inappropriate content, as of all videos flagged as inappropriate by viewers, just 5.6 per cent were removed, meaning brands may well end up advertising next to content consumers find inappropriate. Many big brands have pulled advertising as a result.

Money continues to be poured into Facebook, with over half of Internet advertising spend going to the social media giant and Google last year. This was despite 16 per cent of Facebook accounts being worthless to advertisers, WARC's report stated.

Therefore, keeping brands safe is a major challenge for marketers. Solutions being introduced include focusing on context, and greater transparency in the media supply chain.

There is also a rising distrust in influencer content worldwide, borne out of concerns around authenticity and credibility. In the UK, influencers are trusted less than politicians. What's more, the report found potential around advertising in gaming livestreams and podcasts.

Almost one in four adults has watched a gaming livestream in the past month, and this rate rises to almost one in three among 16-24 year-olds. YouTube and Twitch are competing for views, however, as over 90 per cent of content on Twitch live-streamed presents opportunities for advertisers looking to reach young audiences who are spending less time on linear TV.

Podcast advertising has potential, with ad spend expected to double to US$1.6 billion by 2022 and the New York Times already reporting strong revenue growth from the format. Listeners are highly engaged and research shows ads increase brand consideration; 17 per cent of listeners are 'much more likely' to consider a brand after hearing their ad during a podcast, while 37 per cent are 'somewhat more likely to'. But context is key, and a standardised measurement framework is still to be formally established.

Globally, half of consumers have boycotted a brand with different values, and marketers are using Instagram Stories to boost e-commerce.

In Asia-Pacific, brand safety and fraud limiting programmatic in-app spend are top concerns.

And after two years of hype, voice still has limited traction according to WARC’s Marketer’s Toolkit 2020. A full 69 per cent of marketers are not prepared to implement it into their marketing strategy. 

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia. 

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