Over half (54%) of Brits say they have been tricked into believing fake news and just a quarter feel confident in their ability to identify it.
Research from marketing body Newsworks examined consumers' faith in different news sources to identify how advertisers can leverage the legacy of trust in established news brands.
The data discovered that 79% of UK consumers are concerned about fake news, particularly what they are exposed to on social media. To combat these concerns, news brands are regularly used as a fact-checking source across all demographics.
Almost three quarters (74%) of respondents said they turn to newspaper websites or apps to verify stories they read on social media. This figure is higher among 16-34 year olds (78%) who make up the demographic most commonly turning to established news brands to verify the content they see elsewhere.
When shown genuine headlines on news brand sites compared to genuine headlines on non-news brand sites, people were almost 50% more likely to believe the headlines on the news brand site.
Brand perception increases when advertising within news brands
Interestingly for marketers, the perceived quality of brands is 1.6x higher when consumers see them advertised in a news brand vs a non-news brand, suggesting an opportunity.
Advertising in a news brand could help reduce or counteract any negative forces that diminish brand trust. On brands that advertise in a news brand, consumers were found to be 30% less likely to question the competence of that brand and 20% less likely to perceive buying from or using that brand as a risk.
Jo Allan, Newsworks Chief Executive, said: “Increasingly people are becoming aware of the spread of fake news and misinformation and the pitfalls around social media.
“Our research has shown news brands deliver incredibly strong business effects for advertisers, either directly or by enhancing other media. And what’s clear is that news brands have a massive role to play for marketers.”
Kate Bradbury, Managing Partner at Wavemaker UK, added: “Advertising in a trusted medium like a news brand’s digital or print edition is something we can capitalise on as agencies and advertisers.
“With news brands we can also harness the benefits of being multichannel, where we can produce advertising across digital, print, social and audio, all from the same trusted brand voice.”