Global: Which sectors make the most trustworthy ads?
January 31st, 2022, Graeme Bruce

Global: Which sectors make the most trustworthy ads?

Consumers in developing markets are significantly more likely to trust claims made by brands in advertisements, according to an international YouGov survey.

The survey, conducted in 18 markets, presented respondents with 10 sectors and asked them which they felt made honest and reliable advertisements.

The food and beverage sector makes the most trustworthy ads, according to 21% of global respondents, a plurality in our survey. This is especially true in markets like China, where consumers are more likely than the global average to trust food advertising (27%), as are those in Indonesia (37%), and the United Arab Emirates (34%). However, in some markets, trust in food advertising lags. Consumer in France (8%), Poland (10%) and the United States (14%) are the least likely to show trust in food and beverage marketing.


An average of all responses shows trust in advertising in general is nearly twice as high in developing markets compared to developed markets (19% vs. 10%)

Overall, trust in clothing advertising is also high, with 19% of global respondents suggesting they believe brands are honest and reliable in their marketing messaging. Consumers in urban India over-index in this category, with 35% indicating trust, followed by Mexico (30%) and the UAE (28%). Consumers in Great Britain (11%), Sweden (12%) and Denmark (13%) are least likely to choose clothing marketing as one of their most trusted.

Looking at banking and insurance brands, our overall pattern further solidified. There is high trust among consumers in markets such as India (29%), Hong Kong (24%) and Indonesia (23%) and low trust in European markets such as France (6%), Germany (7%) and Italy (7%).

Again, we see similar response patterns when looking at consumer electronics. India (26%), Indonesia (23%) and Mexico (23%) show the highest levels of trust, while those in Denmark (4%), Great Britain (7%) and Germany (8%) are the least likely to highlight this sector as one of the most reliable.

Overall, 10% of global consumers trust advertising from the video game industry, though trust is at its highest in Mexico (20%), followed by China (18%) and Indonesia (15%). Once again, consumers in European markets are less likely to highlight this kind of advertising as particularly trustworthy, especially in Sweden (4%), Denmark (5%) and Great Britain (7%).

Finally, we look at gambling brands, which are much less likely to be selected as a high-trust advertiser, with between 2% and 7% of respondents indicating betting companies are the most honest in their marketing.

Methodology: The data is based on the interviews of adults aged 18 and over in 18 markets with sample sizes varying between513 and 2,172 for each market. All interviews were conducted online in December 2021. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples.