Newsworks launches ‘trust calculator’ aimed at more effective campaigns

Newsworks launches ‘trust calculator’ aimed at more effective campaigns

Newsworks has launched a ‘trust calculator’ to help provide agencies and advertisers with a more accurate measurement of the overall trust in their brand.

The calculator allows users to input, using consumer research, how familiar, famous, competent, and risk-associated a brand is perceived, and receive a proprietary “trust score” compared to 150 other brands.

The calculator is based on findings from two new research projects launched by Newsworks in recent weeks.

Screenshot of Newsworks’ trust calculator

Speaking on one such research project at a conference in London last month, effectiveness expert Peter Field called the issue of trust an increasingly important metric for brands, and one they should take seriously.

“Trust shouldn’t be written off as some kind of ‘wokery’,” he said.

According to Field’s analysis of IPA Databank data from the past decade, the effectiveness of advertising in newsbrands across six key business effects – including market share, pricing power and profit growth – has increased significantly. Campaigns using newsbrands between 2012-2016 had an uplift in overall effectiveness of 32% compared to campaigns that did not; such uplift was even stronger in the more recent period from 2018-2022 (+52%).

He said: “While the uplifts were still strong in the earlier period of this study, they are much stronger post-2016. This is arguably around the time that trust issues began to explode – think Trump, Brexit and Cambridge Analytica – and the emergence of the fake news era.

“Trust and quality perceptions are interconnected as vital brand metrics, and their importance to advertisers has doubled over the last 20 years. This study shows the case for advertising in newsbrands, which has always been strong, continues to strengthen at a remarkable rate.”

Don’t write trust in media off as ‘wokery’, warns Peter Field

Alongside the new IPA Databank analysis, Newsworks’ second research project, in conjunction with research companies Map the Territory and Tapestry, sought to understand how to better measure consumer trust.

The study examined expert interviews, in-depth interviews with consumers and nationwide surveys with over 10,000 people in which trust was evaluated in more than 150 brands.

The year-long project ultimately led to the creation of the new “trust score” metric in Newsworks’ calculator, which the marketing body says is a “more accurate measurement of trust which considers the multi-faceted nature of this crucial metric”.

“As well as providing a more accurate measurement of the overall trust in a brand, the other key benefit of this new approach is that it acts as a diagnostic tool to help brands identify which pillar, or pillars, to focus on to increase trust in the future,” said Tapestry joint-managing director Ian Wright.

Using this new metric, the study found trust is 1.5x higher when a brand advertises on a newsbrand website compared to a non-newsbrand website.

According to their research, this “halo effect” stems from perceptions of newsbrands’ websites being seen as more competent and less risky than non-newsbrand websites, including social media platforms.

Jo Allan, CEO of Newsworks, added: “We are in the middle of a trust crisis – be it Partygate, the Met Police or unregulated online content – so knowing we can rely on trusted environments like newsbrands is vital for individuals and for advertisers, especially in a world where fake news and misinformation continue to pervade our society.”

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