Trust, in this modern world of ours, is in flux. Edelman just released the 2013 Trust Barometer, a global study that gauges people’s trust in government, business, media, and NGOs. The worldwide mood? Skepticism.

The Bad News

Unfortunately, distrust is still rampant for government, business and NGOs, with the lowest dip in 2012 and some  improvement for 2013. The least trusted segment continues to be  financial services—not surprising in the global financial climate.

The Good News

Trust in media, however, continues to grow across all of its categories. Social media acceptance has grown the most significantly. Trust in other online sources has also increased. So, for those of us who are in the business of online content, that’s a win. And, that’s consistent with our 2012 Content + Credibility Study, where we found digital media (e.g. WebMD) was a highly trusted source for the U.S. and U.K.

When Does Trustworthy Content Count?

All this talk about trust reminded me of another interesting finding from our research. We asked participants about the situations in which trustworthy content matters most. Here’s what we found for Americans, and results were similar for Brits.


Can Financial Services Restore Trust Through Content?

Our participants cared most about trustworthy content for situations involving their health and wealth.  Can financial services overcome skeptical stares from around the world through more credible content? Now is the perfect time to find out. And, at this point, the financial sector has little more to lose.

Originally published on the now-archived Content Science blog in January 2013.

The Author

Lisa Clark is the award-winning Creative Director for Content Science, specializing in visual branding, visual identity, and visual content strategy. You can contact Lisa at Content Science.

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