The Future of Content and Trust in the Digital Landscape



Social Media Week is a leading news platform and worldwide conference that curates and shares the best ideas and insights into social media and technology's impact on business, society, and culture.

Content and technology are enabling us to trust unknown people, brands, and ideas at an unprecedented scale.

In the past, people placed their trust in institutions, but with the rise of the Internet and the social media, people are favoring a new model of trust that is decentralized, more transparent, inclusive, and accountable.

The Role of Content in Digital Landscape

Today, content is the bridge that connects us with other people. However, it does more than just opens the door for interaction and communication, content helps us get to know a brand, the people behind a brand, and the community around a brand like never before.

Unlike other forms of marketing, content gives instead of takes. It’s non-promotional and helps build support and establish a brand’s credibility as it informs and entertains.

Content can be many things, but it is most effective when it responds to what customers are actually saying. Thanks to strides in social listening and analytics technologies, many brands are hearing what customers are saying, but they’re not responding or not responding well to what they’re hearing. Content that is informed by social listening insights enhances a person’s brand experience, but it also helps ensure that a brand’s products and services are aligned with its customers’ voices.

We Trust People Like Us

Whether it’s the way they look, dress, talk, or write, most of us gravitate towards people who we think are like us.

Finding influencers that speak, think and act like your brand is the key to accelerating trust between you and your target consumers. Beyond looking and sounding like your brand, influencers are aspirational figures that people admire and want to imitate.

For instance, if your target audience is stay-at-home millennial moms and you sell organic baby products, then you’d want to use a “momfluencer” who lives a clean healthy lifestyle and embodies a certain look and lifestyle that matches up with your audience’s interests and desires.

What Do Influencers Do?

Influencers introduce their followers to new ideas, brands, and products which are then shared with larger audiences by influencer communities. Influencer communities help spread the word about the content influencers create and promote. They not only get others to join the conversations around a brand, but they also inspire others to create their own content.

Thus, the businesses that can find the right influencers that are aligned with their values can authentically contribute to conversations people are having about their brands online. These businesses can build trust, form deeper long-term relationships with consumers, and create a loyal following by appealing to their interests and lifestyles.

The Future of Content Creation

The digital media landscape is rapidly changing. Brands, creative agencies, and content producers are experimenting with new content formats to appeal to audiences in the age of the eight-second attention span.

As cutting edge technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality improve over the next few years and as more of our everyday objects become Internet-enabled, the real content innovators will not only take an integrated approach but will also think of new ways to inject personalized content in an individual’s day-to-day experience.

From smart fridges to smart watches to smart thermostats to other connected devices, brands and content marketers will have boundless opportunities to get their messages across on new digital screens that are just beginning to be tapped.


Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

Newsletter Subscription

Get the latest insights, trends and best practices from today's leading industry voices.

Watch SMW Live

SMW Insider is a premium video platform that streams more than 180+ hours of talks, presentations, and interviews from leading industry experts.

Subscribe Now

Write for Us

Interested in sharing your ideas and insights with the world? Become a SMW News contributor and reach 300k readers each month.

Apply Here