Edelman presented the “Brand Trust and the Coronavirus Pandemic” research on the role of the private sector during the pandemic. The study was conducted between 23 and 26 March on a sample of 12,000 people in 12 markets (Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, South Africa, South Korea, the United Kingdom, the United States. ) to detect the degree of trust and consumer expectations regarding the role of brands during the emergency.
Italians have confidence in the social role and in the support that brands can provide in the current situation, so much so that 92% expect them to cooperate with the government in dealing with the crisis, 81% believe that brands should constitute a “network of security “to fill any gaps in the action of the authorities, 92% believe that they should offer products free of charge or at highly discounted prices.
One out of three Italians started using a new brand for innovative response or social commitment during an emergency. Brand communication plays an important role in building trust during an emergency. 88% want to be informed about what actions companies are taking to protect consumers and employees, 67% feel it reassuring to receive information about the emergency response of the brands they use, which is higher than the global average.
Empathy and focus on solutions are fundamental for trust in brands, so much that 81% of Italians ask to publicly express support for the communities most affected and the same percentage hopes for a product communication that does not ignore the emergency situation and is focused on the impact that the products themselves have on daily life.
Therefore the communication must not be dystonic respect to the moment, so much that 57% of the sample asks to avoid marketing campaigns that are too cheerful or humorous, while 37% of Italians do not expect to see a communication inspired by evasion or that highlights gathered consumer groups who spend time together using a certain product.
Traditional media are preferred to receive information from brands about the virus, followed by Facebook. A confirmation of the non-secondary role of social networks at this time so much that 87% of Italians ask brands to use them to create a sense of community and offer support to consumers.