Ads don’t build trust: policy driven issues need a comms solution
by Aman Gupta
It was only last month that we woke up to full, front-page ads screaming at us saying: WhatsApp respects and protects your privacy
Now, I’ve spent over two decades of my life as a communications professional and waking up to this “trust us” ad staring at me from every mainline I picked up, made my inner skeptic very uneasy. My first reaction: Okay, but why should people believe you? This question nudged me as I read that dreary page full of text and text and text telling me exactly how our privacy was intact irrespective of WhatsApp’s new update.
The ad was exhaustive and this was WhatsApp’s third attempt at dismissing concerns over their latest app update; which quite frankly didn’t seem to quite work because I had at least 300 people from my personal and professional network shift to Signal (another end-to-end encrypted messaging app) that very day. This episode highlighted a trend that in the communications industry hasn’t caught on yet.
Are advertisements the best way to win consumer trust?