Will the current lack of faith with the media trickle down to content marketing?
Fake news. For the last six months, not a day has gone by where that phrase hasn’t poked its head up during the news cycle. We keep expecting Bill Murray and Punxsutawney Phil to appear along with it. Think so-called fake news only matters to the news channels and politicians? If only that were true. This trend could be causing every person, consciously or not, to question what information they can trust—which is potentially bad news for the written word in any form or venue.
Can this content be trusted?
For the world of content marketing, the goal is to engage consumers and clients with your communication. You want them to view you as a reliable and honest source of information. Bad content has always existed. And despite our best efforts, it always will. Obviously you don’t want to be contributing to its ongoing presence. So don’t write anything false and problem solved, right? Not so fast—whether it’s simple bad writing or truly fake information, too much of it can start to color consumers’ opinions of ALL content. If this goes on for too long, your audience won’t know whom to trust anymore.
Separating the good from the bad
How can you help your audience distinguish the good from the bad? It starts with building on the trust you have already established with them. If they are wary of the media, you can capitalize on this by boosting your own credibility. Customers should view you as a thought leader in your field. You can strengthen this reputation by investigating your customers. What are they interested in learning more about? Use what you discover to influence the insight you share. This isn’t your chance to blatantly promote yourself. We mean for you to offer your knowledge for your customers’ benefit, and don’t expect the payback to happen immediately. This is definitely a “build it, and they will come” scenario.
A little healthy skepticism
We don’t mean to say that a little skepticism here and there is a bad thing. After all, your customers aren’t sheep, and you shouldn’t expect them to be. Keeping business focused on crafting valuable and authentic content is vital. And your customers reading anything with a critical eye should be expected and encouraged. Provide honest value in your communications, and your customers will recognize your efforts.