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Today's trust tip: Use social media profiles to communicate trustworthiness

Hi there. Lynn here.

If a member of your community looks you up on social media, what will they learn about what you stand for and value?

Something we are learning at Trusting News is that users make a lot of assumptions about who we are, what we do and why we do things. Most of the time these assumptions are negative — especially if we're not proactive about telling a story about ourselves. We should take every opportunity to correct their misassumptions. That's true on a brand level, and it's also true on a personal level. (Remember, most Americans have never talked to a journalist.)

An easy way to communicate what you stand for is by sharing it within your personal social media profiles and your author bio (think Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).

When crafting your bios and your engagement strategy, think about what you want a user to know about your approach to news coverage and about how people might engage with you. Do you make it easy for them to contact you? Do you reply? Are you willing to explain yourself? What kind of journalism do you practice? Why do you believe in the work you do?

Check out this Twitter profile from reporter Laura Kebede from Chalkbeat. In it, she manages to communicate what she loves about her job, where she went to college, a couple points of personal and family cultural significance and her contact information. And if you scroll through her posts, you'll see her personality and values expressed alongside links to her work. 

TRY THIS: Take a look at your bios on social platforms and see if you can work in any of the following information. (The links go to previous Trust Tips editions devoted to the specific topics.)

— Lynn Walsh, Trusting News assistant director

COMING RIGHT UP: Trusting News training offerings 

  • IN-PERSON TRAINING: We have three free or really cheap half-day workshops coming up. The first will be at #EIJ19 in San Antonio, Texas, on Sept. 7. The second will be in New Orleans on Sept. 8. The third will be in New Orleans the afternoon of Sept. 11, with registration coming soon through ONA
  • FREE WEBINARS: A free five-webinar series through The Poynter Institute kicked off last week and will continue over several months. Anyone can register here and catch up on sessions you missed.
  • PERSONAL ADVICE: We're still offering free one-on-one advice sessions for journalists? Find out what we can help you with and sign up here.  
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Trusting News aims to demystify trust in news and empower journalists to take responsibility for actively demonstrating credibility and earning trust. It is a project of the Reynolds Journalism Institute and the American Press Institute

Copyright © 2019 Trusting News, All rights reserved.

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