Advertising Standards Canada Releases ASC Research: Consumer Perspectives on Advertising 2015

TORONTO, Sept. 30, 2015 /CNW/ - Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) today released ASC Research: Consumer Perspectives on Advertising 2015, which found that a majority of Canadians continue to feel positively about advertising and get value from the ads they read, hear and see.

This study is a follow-up of our 2014 Consumer Perspectives on Advertising, which revealed that Canadians perceive higher levels of truth and accuracy in advertising appearing in traditional media versus advertising appearing online. To probe more deeply into consumer comfort levels concerning the truth and accuracy of advertising across all media, ASC commissioned The Gandalf Group to conduct a follow-up study earlier this year.  This online research, with a representative sample of 1,052 Canadians, put a particular spotlight on the influence of brand credibility on perceptions of the truth and accuracy of advertising in both online and traditional media.

Report highlights include:

  • A majority of Canadians continue to report they get value from advertising and find it helpful in their daily lives.
  • The vast majority of consumers – roughly four in five - are at least somewhat comfortable with the levels of truth and accuracy in ads for their favourite products and services; those that they like, value and trust; those that are personally known to them; or those that have been recommended to them by friends.
  • Consumers are significantly less comfortable with the levels of truth and accuracy in advertisements for products or services unfamiliar to them, versus ads for products and services they know.
  • Consumers continue to have more trust in ads that appear in traditional media than in those in online media. The lower level of trust in online advertising is somewhat affected by consumers who are 65 years of age and over whose trust level in online is lower than other age groups.
  • For products and services they trust and value, a majority of consumers are "very" or "somewhat comfortable" with the levels of truth and accuracy of ads in both traditional media (81%) and online media (69%). 
  • When it comes to types of online ads, Canadians are more comfortable with the levels of truth and accuracy in promotional emails, search, pre-roll and banner advertising than with other forms of digital advertising.
  • When asked to rate specific forms of online advertising, consumers were more negative than when rating online advertising generally.  

"At the end of the day, it's all about the brand. Trust in the brand is a more significant determinant of trust in an ad than the type of media where the ad is carried. While advertising appearing in traditional media continues to be more widely trusted than advertising appearing online, a large majority of Canadians were comfortable with the level of truth and accuracy in ads for their favorite brands or products in all media," said Linda J. Nagel, President and CEO, Advertising Standards Canada. "Those consumers who distrust online advertising often perceive the entire digital environment as a sort of 'wild west,'" noted David Herle, Principal Partner, The Gandalf Group. "This perception negatively impacts how they view both online content and online advertising."

About ASC
Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) is the national independent advertising industry self-regulatory body committed to creating and maintaining community confidence in advertising. ASC members – leading advertisers, advertising agencies, media and suppliers to the advertising industry – are committed to supporting responsible and effective advertising self-regulation. A not-for-profit organization, ASC administers the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards, the principal instrument of advertising self-regulation in Canada, and a national mechanism for accepting and responding to consumers' complaints about advertising.

SOURCE Advertising Standards Canada

For further information: Christian Campbell, Communications Coordinator, Tel: 416 961-6311, ext. 227,


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