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December 05, 2006

Trust me?

In a comment to something about Google I posted last week, Acronym blogger Lisa Junker asks:

"how can associations build trust in such a way that members will continue (or begin to) turn to them?"
Although I don't recall subscribing to it, I have been getting an association-themed newspaper recently. There's usually one association-type story on the front page, followed by 30 or so pages of news and quote-unquote news about the convention and hospitality business. One of the quote-unquote news stories in the most recent issue laying on my credenza is titled "Experience World-Class Luxury & Service at the Grand Bay Hotel - Isla Navidad Resort." There's no by-line, which leads me to believe the text was written by representatives of the resort.

How the publishers would allow this story and headline to appear under the guise of "News" is simply incomprehensible. You want to know how to build my trust? Stop doing stuff like this.

These advertorials need to be sectioned off from the real news, or noted as paid advertising, or something. Andy Sernovitz's book, Word of Mouth Marketing, talks about disclosure as a necessary tool to warn constituents (especially blog readers) of any potential conflicts of interest. Clearly the concept of disclosure must extend to print media.

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1 comment:

Rick Johnston, CAE said...

I just started getting the same publication and it goes right in the trash. What a waste of resources! Perhaps their only concern is the advertising dollars but those advertisers should know better.