Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Trust can't be broadcast

Trust in the banks is down. I believe the expression is 'no shit, sherlock?'

Much more interesting than the bleeding obvious to me is the accelerating collapse in trust in advertising and traditional mass media.

(Image courtesy.)

This from Edelman's 2009 Trust Barometer release:

  • Trust in nearly every type of news outlet and spokesperson is down from last year.
  • Trust in business magazines and stock or industry analyst reports—last year’s leaders— decreased from 57% to 44% and from 56% to 47%, respectively.
  • Only 13% trust corporate or product advertising—down from last year’s low of 20%.
Let's say that again. Only 13% of people trust the ads now. That's assuming they are still accepting the interruptions.

Even more staggering, the figure for the UK is down to JUST 5%!

So let's assume you overcome our studied ignorance of ads in social media. Those whose attention is snared by them (remember folks, it's a 0.01% click-thru rate), of these, only 13% (5% in the UK) trust what they see, hear and read. So they're hardly likely to act on them.

Peer-to-peer recommendation however, of the kind we see inspiring purchases of products and services every day in social networks, in conversations between friends, is not interruptive and it is trustworthy.
  • Britain trusts media less than any other of the 20 countries surveyed (30%)
  • Traditional sources of information are on the wane and at an all-time low
  • Newspapers down 10 points at 19%;
  • Radio news down 20 at 33%
  • There is a Trust Bust in conventional Corporate Comms
  • Only 5%trust corporate/ product advertising; 15% for corporate website, press releases, live speeches - Edelman Trust Barometer, UK
More reason to explore models like this.

Trust in banking and business is down because of some very unusual economic factors.

Trust in mass media is down because of something much more fundamental. We've found ways to connect one to another - there is a new model which places trust in new places - in each other, in the edge - not the centre.

Trust can't be broadcast.

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The rate of change is so rapid it's difficult for one person to keep up to speed. Let's pool our thoughts, share our reactions and, who knows, even reach some shared conclusions worth arriving at?