KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysians believe more in news and information spread by word of mouth than what they read in the papers or hear on TV and radio, a recent survey shows.
“The explosion in consumer generated media over the last couple of years means consumers’ reliance on word of mouth in the decision-making process, either from people they know or online consumers they don’t, has increased significantly,” said Wong Mae Suen, associate director of the media group of the Nielsen Company.
The company recently carried out an online global survey, which showed that recommendations by personal acquaintances are the most trusted form of advertising in Malaysia.
Trust in opinions of those they know
The survey of internet consumers, carried out by the global information and media company, showed that more than nine out of 10 Malaysians (93%) trust the opinions of those they know, followed by editorial content (82%), brand websites (75%) and brand sponsorships (75%).
Tied in fifth position are advertisements in newspapers and on TV (74%).
Malaysians have more faith in advertisements on TV, radio and in the newspaper than in the opinions posted online by strangers, whereas globally, consumers’ online opinions rank second only to recommendations by acquaintances.
Why ads are important
The same survey also showed that more Malaysians understood the significance of advertising and sponsorship as a source of funding for cultural and sporting events (91%), and as a key contributor to economic growth (88%), than the global average (81% and 71% respectively).
Regional differences in attitudes toward advertising also surfaced in the survey.
European consumers appeared to be more skeptical of advertisements and found them less entertaining than their counterparts in Latin America, Asia-Pacific and North America.
-- Malaysian Mirror
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