3rd Party Content Appears More Credible

According to a new study from inPowered and conducted by Nielsen, consumers rely on credible, third-party content more than branded content or user reviews when making decisions. (credible: third-party articles & reviews).

Several key findings from the research indicate that the credibility and unbiased nature of the content was critical for consumers:

  • 85% of consumers regularly or occasionally seek out trusted expert content (credible, third-party articles & reviews) when considering a purchase
  • 69% of consumers like to read product reviews written by trusted experts before making a purchase
  • 67% of consumers agree that an endorsement from an unbiased expert makes them more likely to consider purchasing

The study, to determine which type of content was most impactful across the different stages of the consumer purchase process, and to help marketers identify the most effective blend of content types to effectively inform consumers, showed that expert content, articles from credible journalists, was the only content type to exhibit a strong lift in all 3 areas of the purchase cycle. It provided the most familiarity lift for 7 out of the 9 products, the most affinity lift for 5 of the 9 products, and the most purchase intent lift for 6 of the 9 products. 

Brand Lift Based on Information Source

 

Average Brand Familiarity

Content

Before Exposure

After exposure

Average Lift

Trusted content

61%

76%

15%

User generated content

60

70

10

Branded content

66

74

8

(How familiar are you with the following brands of products?… top two boxes)

Source: inPowered/Nielsen, March 2014

On average, expert content lifted brand familiarity 88% more than branded content and 50% more than user reviews; it lifted brand affinity 50% more than branded content and 20% more than user reviews; and it lifted purchase intent 38% more than branded content and 83% more than user reviews.

Purchase Likelihood Based on Information Source

 

Average Purchase Intent

Content

Before Exposure

After exposure

Average Lift

Trusted content

40%

51%

11%

User generated content

36

42

6

Branded content

46

54

8

(How likely are you to consider purchasing ‘product’?… top two boxes)

Source: inPowered/Nielsen, March 2014

According to the report, here were certain categories where either branded or user-generated content had even greater lift than trusted content from journalists. For example, when it comes to home appliances, many consumers just want to see the spec of the appliance, and they trust the brand’s own content is the best source for accurate specs. And in gaming, most gamers value other gamers’ reviews because they view their fellow gamers as experts in that field.

Content With Greatest Lift Across Purchase Funnel

 

Purchase Funnel

Category

Familiarity

Affinity

Purchase Intent

Auto

Trusted

Trusted

Trusted

Mobile

Trusted

Trusted

Trusted

Consumer electronics

Trusted

User

Trusted

Home appliances

User

Branded

Trusted

Insurance

Trusted

Trusted

Trusted

Parenting

Trusted

Trusted

User

Gaming

Trusted

User

User

KEY:Trusted content, User content, Branded content

Source: inPowered/Nielsen, March 2014

 Peyman Nilforoush, co-founder and CEO of inPowered, concludes by noting that “… this isn’t about disproving any particular type of content… (but) about identifying… effective blend of content types to help… educate and inform consumers.”

For more information about details of the study formulation and design parameters, as well as a free download of the complete study, please visit inPowered here.  

 

 

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1 comment about "3rd Party Content Appears More Credible ".
  1. Bob Gordon from The Auto Channel , April 1, 2014 at 11:41 a.m.
    It's comforting to see that our belief that native advertising (vanity content) is a double detriment for marketers, it squanders ad budgets, and maybe more importantly diverts the advertiser's energy from implementing realistic and effective digital marketing and advertising...although it has created jobs and revenue for the snake oil industry. The Auto Channel's 20 year old policy of not accepting vehicle reviews from owners has now been validated by this research study. Why are brands continuing to fall for the native bullshit?