The news media – long criticized and now much maligned – has one ace in the hole that fake news can’t touch. And that ace is print.
“Fake news relies heavily on social media to get content shared fast and wide, counting on the fact that most people won’t look too much into a tweet or Facebook post’s title and retweet and/or share blindly,” writes Simon Leslie, CEO of Ink.
Those social platforms are now scrambling to combat this issue. If you’ve used Facebook recently, you’ve probably noticed how they are going about it. Advertisers, meanwhile, are increasingly and painfully more aware of the potential damage to their reputation of being aligned with fake news stories.
“Some major brands have confessed that their ads have appeared on fake news sites, unbeknown to them, until unhappy customers complained,” Leslie notes. “The customers see the brands as endorsing the fake news website’s often divisive and controversial agenda, making it a monster of a marketing nightmare.”
And it is a nightmare, one that’s cast a shadow of doubt on all news media. The answer, according to Leslie, lies with advertisers:
“Due to the rise of fake news and with brands and companies being looked upon to act on them, now is the time for advertisers to choose quality over quantity, becoming more selective with who and how they advertise,” he explains.
“Relationships between advertisers and publishers have changed since programmatic advertising became popular. But marketing gurus can make sure they buy quality, controlled advertising through forging strong relationships with publishers,” Leslie continues.
Now’s a perfect time to implement this concept, as we are witnessing a sea change in programmatic advertising unfolding in real time. In that change, print is again rising in strength as a trusted source for readers. As advertisers look for shelter from the fake news storm, print media looks more and more like a safe harbor.