According to the first ExpertVoice Consumer Trust Panel, presented here without editorial interruption, only 4% of consumers trust celebrity endorsements, while 83% trust the recommendations from friends and family. In today's overcrowded marketplace, consumers are searching for trusted recommendations before making a purchase, says the report.
The consumer panel investigated the buying behavior of a weighted U.S. Census Audience of more than 500 consumers, specifically looking into who consumers trust for recommendations on what to buy.
The results found that, while celebrity endorsements, athlete sponsorships and influencer marketing have all been proven to raise awareness, this panel found that these tactics aren’t effective at driving consumers to make purchases. When seeking advice on what to buy, 4% seek celebrities, 7% trust professional athletes, and 6% trust social influencers.
With the influencer marketing industry expected to reach $10 billion by 2020, it’s likely brands will be looking for better ways to complement their top of funnel tactics, with efforts that directly drive sales performance, says the report.
According to 57% of respondents, the greatest concern for consumers regarding celebrity, athlete and influencer recommendations is the monetary compensation given to the individual from the brands they’re promoting. Additionally, in the free response section of the survey, many consumers expressed concern over what knowledge a celebrity possesses regarding the product they’re being paid to endorse.
An overwhelming 83% of respondents stated that friends and family were their top choice. Responding to the question of who they’ve taken buying advice from in the past year, 85% said friends and family while only 6% took advice from both influencers and athletes and just 2% from celebrities.
54% said they would trust the recommendation from a professional expert, like a coach or instructor, while 52% would trust the recommendation of coworkers. Retail associates remained neutral in this weighted scale; about 42% of respondents didn’t feel strongly toward the value they offered in providing a valuable recommendation.
ExpertVoice CEO Tom Stockham concludes by saying “… brands spend significant marketing dollars to raise awareness and ensure they’re top of mind for the consumer…, but the results of this panel indicate that when it comes to actually purchasing a product, consumers want a recommendation from someone they believe to be authentic… in today’s environment, celebrities, influencers and sometimes even the brands themselves aren’t viewed as trusted… so consumers are looking elsewhere…”
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