Fake News Gives Honest Advertisers a Genuine Opportunity

Fake News Gives Honest Advertisers a Genuine Opportunity

By: Joe Vinsik

We will not get political in this post. There, it’s upfront. I just want you to have proper expectations. In any case, you are most likely aware that fake news is a big topic of conversation right now. You might think that makes the buyer more beware when reading content published by and or written by an advertiser instead of a traditional publisher. You’d be wrong… if the content is good.

Native Advertising is also very big right now and there are a lot of advertisers and publishers doing this wonderful device a huge disservice. Let’s fix that together and win you some loyalty, affinity and awareness.

Properly produced content, to be used for native advertising, can be highly effective, especially if done well. In fact, Millennials and Gen Z actually trust and prefer this type of advertising according to many studies. Here’s why.

  • My sister can call me with a harebrained $326.17 scheme for our parent’s anniversary gift and I’m all for it. I trust her.
  • There are certain family members that could offer me a great deal on pure gold and I may not even consider it. They are on the outer edge.
  • People I don’t know, offering me info about a topic I don’t care will gain little of my trust.

Speak to customers that care about your topic by utilizing a brand name voice that they trust and by disseminating information that is helpful, educational, entertaining or valuable in some way shape or form and does not scream, “BUY ME”.

Here’s an example. We work with many independent living facilities so I’ll use them to illustrate. Which of these scenarios makes more sense to you?

  1. Create a story about your upcoming open house and offer a move in special for mentioning the ad.
  2. Write a detailed account of the interesting life led by one of your key residents. Explore her background and what sorts of adventures she’s had. Give the audience an idea of the scope and breadth of her life experience, the people she’s touched and the lessons she’s learned along the way. Offer a full picture of the life and times of a woman that could be the reader’s grandmother.

Which one do you want to read? Yeah, me too. And yes, your customers as well. You don’t even need to mention your website although I would highly suggest having your advertisements close to the content. We call that an adjacency or, in the digital world, Contextual Targeting.

Back to fake news for a moment. Fake news or click bait is created to earn clicks and page views by an organization incapable (or ambivalent) of doing so with integrity and honesty. You are going to be different. You are going to write something meaningful, inspirational, educational or entertaining and GASP, TRUE! Not only that but, you are going to be transparent that you paid to do so!

You will label the article as paid. You will list your company as the author in the byline. You will say loud and proud, “This is a paid message!” And you will be rewarded with affinity, awareness and loyalty because you spoke the truth.

In a world full of fake, truth in advertising stands out in a big way.