News websites: Nielsen US study finds that news is not bad for brands

Negative or political news does not adversely impact attitude towards a brand.

News websites help drive sales for brands and create value for advertisers through quality journalism, according to a new Nielsen study commissioned by News Corp.

The global publisher has detailed that a 2018 Nielsen Media Lab survey and white paper highlights the power of news websites to positively impact consumer behaviour and brand perception. Key findings include:

• News sites drive a significantly higher increase in both purchase intent and recommendation than other publishing categories such as sports, travel, food, and entertainment.

• News content helps increase positive brand perception and brand affinity.

• Negative or political news content is no more likely to adversely impact consumer attitude towards a brand than any other publisher category.

“Authenticity and actuality are precious qualities in an age of the artificial and the asinine. It is important that advertisers have adjacencies to reporting of the utmost integrity and verified veracity, and not have the brands tarnished by exposure in unsafe spaces and polluted places. Gilt by association is far preferable to guilt by association,” said Robert Thomson, chief executive of News Corp. “This significant survey underscores the lasting power of news to engage, inform and enhance.”

The survey also showed that respondents were 42% more likely to recommend a brand to a friend when viewing content on news publisher sites, nearly 10% higher than the combined average of the other publisher sites.

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