TV ads are the single most important source of information on new products, cited by one quarter (25%) of UK respondents in a new study from Nielsen. TV ads were followed by free samples (21%), internet searching (19%), friends/family (16%) and in-store information (12%). However, across Europe as a whole, TV ads (29%) and free samples (24%) are a little more likely to be the single most important source of information, whilst internet searching (12%), friends/family (12%) and in-store (9%) are a little less likely to be respondents’ main source.

The Nielsen Global Survey of New Product Purchase Sentiment surveyed more than 29,000 internet respondents (all with internet access) in 58 countries, and also found that TV ads were one of the most effective ways to introduce new products consumers via paid advertising (Internet search came out on top but is hardly comparable as it’s capturing pre-existing intent):

Nielsen Research

However, UK consumers are more willing to consider switching to a new brand (59%) than consumers globally (50%); but over half (52%) of UK consumers say they won’t purchase an innovative new product until it has proven itself. Britons are less cautious about needing this proof-of-concept than consumers globally (60%) and across Europe (58%). Forty percent of Britons say they prefer to buy from a UK brand rather than a large global one.

“Innovating on established brands that are already trusted by consumers can be a powerful strategy,” said Johan Sjöstrand, European managing director of Nielsen BASES, which helps clients grow through innovation. “Companies spend millions on new product innovation, yet two-thirds of them won’t survive beyond three years.”

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