For the past month, Facebook has been embroiled in a scandal that threatened to disrupt social media marketing. In mid-March, an investigative report from The Guardian and the New York Times revealed that Cambridge Analytica, an analytics firm linked with Donald Trump’s election campaign, had “harvested millions of Facebook profiles of US voters … and used them to build a powerful software program to predict and influence choices at the ballot box.”

The report seemed to validate the public’s creeping mistrust of social media. On March 21 and 22, the Angus Reid Institute surveyed more than 1,500 Canadians about their planned behaviour on Facebook. Nearly three-quarters said they planned to alter how they use the platform, including one in 10 who said they would take a break or delete their account. Thirty-eight per cent also said their opinion of Facebook had worsened over the last month.

Social media marketing – and advertising on Facebook, in particular – has become critical to most companies’ digital marketing strategies. As such, businesses must take strides to foster a trustworthy, transparent image by reaching out to and communicating with customers, posting images and videos of team members and company activities, and posting about news and events that are relevant to your community. Users may not trust Facebook, but they should trust your business.

Of course, Facebook may be so ingrained in users’ lives that no breach of trust could force them to cut the cord. This week, Facebook released its Q1 2018 financial reports and, perhaps predictably, the social media juggernaut trounced estimates. It recorded 63 per cent year-over-year growth in net income, fueled by 50 per cent growth in advertising revenue.

As a Premier Google Partner All-Star digital marketing agency with access to valuable insights on Google’s preferred practices, GrowthEngine Media is committed to helping clients connect with their target audiences through paid search marketing, social media marketing, and a variety of other digital marketing strategies.

 

Image credit: Brian Solis, www.briansolis.com