Brand Recommendations Survey: Nearly All Trust Personal Recommendations

Consumers have always gone to friends and family for advice when buying new products or services. And social media adds another way for consumers to share their favorite brands and products with their friends and family. How much do consumers trust these recommendations compared with advertising and other materials?

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Personal Recommendations

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 10% of respondents said that they always seek out personal recommendations from friends and family before buying a new product or service. Another 33% said that they seek out personal recommendations most of the time. 34% said they seek out recommendations about half the time. 20% said that they rarely seek out recommendations from friends and family before making purchases. And 5% said they never do.

However, only 9% of those respondents said that they completely trust personal brand recommendations from friends and family. 73% said that they somewhat trust these recommendations. 13% said that they don’t really trust these recommendations. And 5% said they don’t trust personal recommendations at all.

Social Media

Now that so many consumers use social media to connect with their favorite businesses and brands, their friends and connections can easily see this information and draw conclusions from it. 11% of consumers said that they definitely change their opinions of certain brands when they see friends and family like or follow them on social media. 49% said that seeing a friend like or follow a certain brand on social media can somewhat change their opinion of the brand. And 41% said that it makes no difference to them.

Other Brand Factors

Of course, personal recommendations aren’t the only source of information for consumers looking to buy products or services. 61% of respondents said that they trust consumer reviews as much or more than they trust personal recommendations. 43% said they trust information from websites and online searches. 30% said they trust professionally written reviews. 21% said they trust social media or email posts from businesses. And just 11% said they trust advertising.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Like Facebook Headquarters Thumb from Flickr

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on March 22 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Anne Pilon
Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.