Social Media Makes Gains As A Trusted Source, But It’s Still Behind Traditional Media

edelman-trustConsumers around the world are gaining trust in social media as a source of business information, but it still lags behind other sources such as corporate websites and traditional media.

The findings come from the 2012 Edelman Trust Barometer, a global survey that’s now in its 12th year. The survey includes feedback from more than 30,000 people in 25 countries, with an emphasis on what’s called “Informed Publics” — these are college-educated people between 25-64 years old that are among the top earners in their countries and describe themselves as heavy consumers of media information.

In this year’s survey, 14 percent of people said social media is a trusted source of company information — up from just eight percent a year ago. But it’s still getting the lowest trust score of the four options shown below.


Information on corporate websites is seen as trustworthy by 16 percent of respondents, while traditional media is trusted by 32 percent of those surveyed.

In a separate question, respondents were asked how much they trust businesses in certain industries “to do what is right.” Just as in 2011, businesses in the Technology industry are trusted the most — 79 percent in this year’s report, compared to 80 percent a year ago. Trust in technology companies is highest in India, China and the United States. It was much lower in the UK, France and Germany.

You can view the full Edelman report on

Related Topics: Channel: Strategy | Social Media Marketing | Statistics: General


About The Author: is Editor-In-Chief of Marketing Land. His news career includes time spent in TV, radio, and print journalism. His web career continues to include a small number of SEO and social media consulting clients, as well as regular speaking engagements at marketing events around the U.S. He recently launched a site dedicated to Google Glass called Glass Almanac and also blogs at Small Business Search Marketing. Matt can be found on Twitter at @MattMcGee and/or on Google Plus. You can read Matt's disclosures on his personal blog.

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  • Luis Galarza

    It was inevitable that for social media to have an increase when it comes to influence people, that’s the power of word-of-mouth marketing with a little help of technology!….

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