Ad bombardment is the biggest driver of distrust in advertising and its importance has increased significantly for younger audiences over the last two years.
That’s according to new research* from Credos, UK advertising’s thinktank, which reports that the importance score this demographic attaches to ad bombardment has almost doubled, from 19 out of 100 in 2021 to 32 out of 100 today.
Why ad frequency matters to trust
The most significant driver of public trust in advertising is enjoyable creativity (with an importance score of 31/100), and separate research suggests that such creative can be effective with lower frequency; lower performing creative, on the other hand, may benefit from higher frequency. Media planners need to monitor reach and frequency levels to ensure that a campaign receives sufficient exposure without becoming an irritant.
Advertising’s social contribution is the second most important driver of trust with an importance score of 10/100.
Data privacy is more important in driving distrust for 35-54-year-olds, versus other age groups (importance score for 18-34s of 5, 35-54s of 17, 55+ of 7).
The significance of misleading and invasive advertising techniques as a driver of distrust has decreased since 2021 (importance score down from 13 to 8).
Three factors shaping sentiment towards ads
World view: attitudes to advertising sit within a much broader set of individual values and views, such as how people feel about living in a consumer society.
Media socialisation: older people were socialised in a more static media landscape, while younger people have grown up in a world supplemented by ever-changing web-based media. These experiences shape expectations of and attitudes towards advertising.
Definition: the public has a broad definition of advertising, which embraces everything from sponsorships and window displays to packaging and scams.