Ipsos MORI Thinks

What is the role of trust in consumer innovation?

ALEX BAVERSTOCK Head of Product and Pack Testing, UK

Trust doesn’t tell the whole story

If you sell products or services, obviously it is better to be trusted than not – it’s good for repeat business, with people choosing you ahead of other less trusted options.

Being trusted can also give you an edge when developing a new offer, and we know that concepts from familiar brands are more likely to be ‘promising’ propositions.82 However, innovations from familiar brands don’t always show good potential.

Focus on drivers of innovation success and trust should follow

When it comes to successful innovation, trust matters less than three key drivers: Relevance, Expensiveness and Differentiation. Perform strongly on these, relative to what exists on the market, and success is more likely.

The promise of something new and different drives much consumer innovation, so pre-existing trust isn’t always important. But at the same time, how would new brands enter the market if people weren’t willing to take a ‘leap of faith’ occasionally? This is another example of the nuances of trust and how it works differently in different scenarios.

Trust: The Truth?

We decided to write this report because we wanted to test if the prevailing narrative matched the data. The ‘truth about trust’ is that trust is complex, and takes many forms (many of these forms are not in crisis or decline). Without some degree of trust society simply would not function…