How to Combat the Fake News Frenzy in B2B PR
By Wendy Marx
During the 2016 presidential elections, President Donald Trump stirred up a public frenzy about fake news. The ripples of this mania can be felt and seen throughout the B2B PR sector.
A recent UKPulse survey of UK residents conducted by Gorkana shows just how deep this distrust of media has become. Asked what specific sources they trusted for news, 72% chose close friends, family, and personal contacts followed, in order of preference, by national radio, local radio, community sites or online forums, and financial institutions.
On the other end of the scale,, respondents chose social media as the least trustworthy source — with only 18% of respondents finding Facebook trustrworthy and a mere 17% rating Twitter trustworthy.
Traditional media outpaced online media.
Ony 40% said online news sources were trustworthy and just 34% found bloggers trustworthy. That compares to 59% of respondents who noted TV as trustworthy; national radio received 56%, local radio received 54% and regional papers notched 48%.
So with plenty of distrust to spread around, how can honest, upright PR professionals gain public trust?
That’s what we’re here to discuss. We’ve gathered 8 stellar ways that you can rebuild public trust.
8 Ways to Fight Against Fake News in B2B PR
1. Go Traditional
As we noted in the survey above, people are turning more toward traditional outlets for trusted news stories. These traditional outlets include national and local radio, regional newspapers, and television.
Find the media outlets that your target audience trusts the most, and use those to promote your stories.
2. Research All Your Facts Thoroughly
Have you ever played the game “telephone”? This childhood game starts with a simple statement that is whispered down a line only to be completely distorted by the time it reaches the end. Fake news stories can begin in much the same way — with one simple fact that’s slowly transformed until it’s an unrecognizable falsehood.
As PR professionals, we can prevent this. Before promoting any story on social media or elsewhere, it’s imperative that we thoroughly verify all the facts. A little extra work beforehand can save our reputation in the long run.
3. Work Hard to Earn Credibility with Readers
Remember what source was overwhelmingly voted as the most trustworthy from the survey above? Friends, family, and personal contacts are who people turn to for reliable information. How can you leverage this? Through your prospects and customers.
Build a reputation of trust and credibility among your prospects and customers. This will translate into a golden seal of approval when they recommend your information to their contacts.
4. Give Credit Where Credit Is Due
Attribution adds an air of transparency to our work. When readers can click through and check for themselves the source of any given fact or figure, they are more likely to trust the information as a whole. This Go to the full article.