McCann Study – COVID-19: Major Upswing in Government Trust as Brand Trust Declines

McCann Study – COVID-19: Major Upswing in Government Trust as Brand Trust Declines

Drawing from national data across a wide range of ages, genders and geographical regions over the last 18 months, the original Truth About Australia study (published in November 2019) showed that consumers displayed a lack of faith and trust in all Australian institutions, especially amongst government (61% claimed they didn’t trust government and 64% thought politicians were less truthful than 20 years ago).


Fast forward to May 2020 and McCann’s latest study conducted on the “Truth About Australia in the face of COVID-19” demonstrates a significant renewal of faith and trust in the government – with 96% of Australians saying the government is living up to their expectations, 83% feeling the government has helped more than brands, and 95% claiming to trust the government over brands.

McCann Melbourne’s managing partner strategy, Simon McCrudden (pictured) says while this is a staggering shift, there is undoubtedly a major gap that brands and businesses must acknowledge in order re-establish familiarity and regain trust amongst consumers: “The study reveals that Australians ‘expect brands and businesses to play a meaningful role in their lives’ – with 76% of people expecting brands to contribute to their quality of life and well-being.

“This provides a pivotal moment for brands to advance their standing with consumers whilst being mindful to strike the right balance of being considerate partners rather than opportunistic marketers. As we work with our clients to bolster our nation’s recovery, these insights allow us to recognise lessons from the pandemic and navigate our responses in a more significant way.”

According to the research, 72% of people worldwide are open to brands playing a broader role in society. Brands will need to consider their role and determine how they can actively contribute to people’s lives as humanity starts to return to a new version of normal.

“This can present in many forms, whether it be employment opportunities, remaining visible and reliable during uncertainty, or the way brands communicate with consumers. For example, brands have an opportunity to tap into the collective need for humour to lift spirits and bring positivity to people’s lives in times of uncertainty.

“As a group, we’re investing in understanding and learning more about the behaviours and attitudes of Australians and working to help clients play a meaningful role in people’s lives.”