Report: Social Media Trust Surges in 2011

If you haven’t reviewed Edelman’s recently released 2012 Trust Barometer, it’s worth at least a bit of your time. For marketers, it reveals some surprising data that should bolster hopes in social media as a legitimate marketing strategy, if you needed convincing.

Some key takeaways include:

  • There is a growing skepticism of government and business entities.
  • Most people (63 percent) say something must be heard between three and five times to be believed.
  • The diversification of trusted media sources continues.
  • Traditional media outlets continue to be viewed as the most trustworthy.
  • Social media saw the biggest jump in trust as an information source (+75 percent).
  • Despite the trust increase for social media, it still is in last place as a source for trusted information, narrowly trailing corporate-owned media.

Interesting findings, but what are the applications for marketers? Consider that 1.) When establishing trust quickly is imperative, traditional media offers the surest path to believability; 2.) Establishing trust through social media will require greater coordination, consistency and commitment; and 3.) Since it appears imminent that social media will overtake corporate media in terms of trust, this further opens the door to individuals to become trusted sources of information.

What do you think? What increases the media trust factor for you?

Author: Steve Sonn

Steve Sonn is the Principal of S2 Marketing Communications. He has more than 25 years of marketing and PR experience with health care and business-to-business companies.

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