The New Zealand arm of global research firm Kantar TNS says its research shows New Zealanders are very sceptical about information they read online, and this could create a big headache for brands and business marketing through social media.
The findings come from a piece of Kantar TNS research entitled ‘Navigating the Digital Labyrinth’ – a survey of almost 2000 New Zealanders — which, it says "lifts the lid on Kiwi attitudes to all things digital."
Kantar TNS New Zealand client director Jonathan Pickup said the company's research suggested only 19 percent of New Zealanders trust the information they read online.
“If brands don’t demonstrate authenticity, there is a real risk that the lack of trust in the vehicle used to deliver a message can be transferred to the message owner by association," he said.
Facebook (29 percent trust) and Twitter (16 percent) were the most likely companies to be distrusted and mainstream service providers such as a respondent's main bank (85 percent), main insurance provider (72 percent) and electricity provider (70 percent) considered the most trustworthy.
However, Pickup said the lack of trust was not discouraging people from using these platforms with 71 percent of Kiwis using Facebook every day. Nineteen percent said they use it less than a year ago and 34 percent said they use it more often.
YouTube had a higher net growth (nine percent using less, 39 percent using more). Instagram usages changes were similar to those for Facebook but only four percent of respondents indicated increased Twitter usage and nine percent indicated less usage.
Pickup said Kantar TNS's research also showed Kiwis to be worried about their online security but most not doing the simple things they know they should to protect themselves.
Kiwis lazy about security
Kantar TNS found 46 percent of respondents worried about how easily their home network could be hacked, and for those aged over 60, 58 percent
"While 84 percent describe themselves as security conscious, only 49 percent of New Zealanders are using anti-virus software. Only 19percent change their passwords regularly, with 68 percent admitting this is something they should do more often," he said.
"While 41 percent use different passwords for different sites, 47 percent know this is something they should do, but don’t. And just over a fifth of those surveyed review security settings regularly on sites they log into but almost 60percent feel they should do so more often."