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Why Has Trust Become A Precious Commodity?


Trust seems to be something that is hard to find these days. An initial study by Global Media Transparency two years ago, discovered that more than twice as many people said that their trust in their media agency was very low vs. people who said it was high or very high. When the study was updated this year, https://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/trust-clients-media-agencies-falls-further/149303145% of those surveyed said that trust in their agency was low or very low vs. only 10% who claimed it was high or very high. Basically, the results indicated that trust is in free fall.

This may partially be connected to the fact that trust in society as a whole is in decline, with politics not surprisingly leading the way. Edelman's Trust Survey, https://hbr.org/2017/01/survey-peoples-trust-has-declined-in-business-media-government-and-ngosshowed that a staggering 82% of people across 28 countries claimed to have little or no trust in government and the media.

What is behind this tremendous lack of trust? In first place is probably a growing sense that institutions and people can't be trusted to do what they say they are going to do. Again and again, we have seen politicians and companies pursuing a strategy of over-promising and under-delivering and people are becoming jaded. They don't know who to believe and therefore are moving towards a position of not trusting anyone or anything that they are told.

The real question in the media and marketing industry is whether or not anything can be done to rectify this trust deficit and improve overall agency and client relationships. One of the strategies has to be for media agencies to increase their ability to deliver what they promise in terms of communications and advertising effectiveness. Ensuring that communications are validated in 'real life' rather than artificial contexts, and that things like outside distractions are taken into consideration, can increase a campaign's probability that it's research score will actually reflects its likely in market performance. Otherwise, it leads to high expectations and frequently low actual delivery. COG focuses on helping media agencies improve their ability to deliver against their promises and improve their overall trust levels with clients.

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