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Your targeted audiences must trust you enough to follow, click and share

The Trusting News Project's findings help guide journalists to earn their audience’s trust through social media strategies.

Social media ecosystems are more crowded than ever and are often filled with false information from sources masquerading as news. That means part of your newsroom’s challenge is proving that your target audiences should trust you. The Trusting News Project spent a year studying users’ reactions to 14 news outlets’ social media strategies designed to enhance trust. During the work, three themes emerged around what journalists should do, according to the project’s executive report:

  • Tell your story: “As an organization, make sure you know what user needs you fill.”
  • Engage authentically: “Encourage conversation and interaction. Listen and respond. Invite people to get to know you. Participate in a way that feels natural to the user. Admit what you don’t know. Be human.”
  • Deploy your fans: “Specifically encourage sharing, as a part of healthy contributions to their social networks’ information diets. Invite users to make a relationship with you part of their social identity, and to join you in your mission to make the world better informed.”

You can explore the Trusting News Project’s website to read the executive report, search social media posts from the study, and discover ideas to try at your own news organization.