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Online branding today’s consumer gospel
Toronto, April 23, 2008 — Consumers looking for information on new products are putting aside their healthy cynicism of corporate branding and gravitating toward company websites, which some consumers believe to be more credible than news media.
“Brands have come a long way in how they present corporate and product information and as a result we are seeing consumers gravitating towards company websites for information,” said Pat McNamara, president of APEX Public Relations, which commissioned the study. “The company website is a powerful medium that we can use to communicate with a captivated audience – we need to ensure we are doing so with maximum impact.”
The data supports recently released research from the APEX PR Influencer Report that identified industry experts as more significant when it comes to influencing purchasing decisions than celebrities and journalists. Those who lend credence to corporate website information are mostly trendy individuals with a strong knowledge of new technologies and products, but who tend to purchase products after they have been on the market for some time.
The trend toward corporate websites is more prevalent in the eastern provinces than out west where consumers tend to place greater scrutiny on big brands. Not surprisingly, younger audiences were most likely to believe information from corporate websites than are middle-aged Canadians or seniors.
“Young adults, particularly those in their university years, represent the first generation to have had access to the Internet throughout their formative years, and they have learned to gravitate toward company websites for quick and reliable information on the products that interest them,” said McNamara.
The study was conducted between September 7 and 18, 2007, and surveyed 1,517 adults across Canada. It is considered accurate within +/- 2.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
About APEX Public Relations
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