A new online study commissioned by the European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance (EDAA) and TrustArc, has revealed that awareness of an icon aimed at providing greater transparency and control over behavioral advertising has doubled in Great Britain, and in just two years, the EU Self-Regulatory Programme underpinning this has achieved recognition and engagement.

The European Advertising Consumer Research Index 2014 provides a comprehensive picture of attitudes and awareness of the EU Self-Regulatory Programme across Europe.  The study was conducted by Ipsos MORI, on behalf of TrustArc and the EDAA from 21 October – 10 November 2014, with over 10,000 respondents across ten different European countries.

Increasing Awareness of OBA Icon in Europe

The results show that awareness of the icon continues to rise in Great Britain, with awareness increasing from 13% (2012) to 22% (2013) to 26% (2014) over the last two years and that the EDAA’s 2014 consumer awareness campaign provided a significantly greater level of awareness in Greece, where 39% of respondents are familiar with the icon.

Among those who have seen the icon in Sweden and Greece, around 1 in 3 (both 32%) have chosen to find out more by clicking on the icon, with this figure rising to around half in Spain (49%). The Programme has been shown to have the potential for a positive effect on attitudes too, with 54% in Portugal more favorable towards the idea of online behavioral advertising if they have information about how adverts are delivered to them online and the option of managing their privacy preferences.

A summary of key findings includes:

  • Consumer awareness of the icon is highest in Greece (39%), where the most recent consumer awareness campaign took place
  • Across four countries surveyed (GB, Greece, Portugal, and Hungary), the recognition is significantly higher when the icon is accompanied by the Admarker text e.g., “AdChoices”
  • Among those who have previously seen the icon, the proportion who report they have clicked on it is highest in Spain (49%)
  • 1 in 25 respondents aged between 18-50 in the ten markets surveyed says they have visited the www.youronlinechoices.eu website.
  • Across the ten countries, the majority (57%) of 18-50-year-olds who report they have visited www.youronlinechoices.eu correctly believe its primary purpose is to provide instructions to manage their advertising preferences.
  • The Programme has the potential to improve consumer attitudes, with 54% of respondents in Portugal saying that having the option of managing their privacy preferences and information about how adverts are delivered to them online would make them more favorable towards behavioral or interest-based ads.