BlogHer 2012 Study: Blogs Beat Facebook in Trust Test

BlogHer Original Post

Blogs Won the Trust Test

  • The blog review was ranked the most trustworthy by both women online and the BlogHer community. I should note that these results were NOT filtered by active blog readers , so it provides Facebook with the greatest advantage given its widespread adoption. However, despite Facebook’s higher adoption rate, it did not drive higher trust in this case.
  • We believe think the survey makes the case that blog conversations are the single best use of marketing and advertising dollars by brands that want to grow their reach to women online.

→More details on the Trust Test (if you don't care about this, skip down past the italics to our question for you: Why do women trust blogs best?) 

We showed women three different images of online marketing and asked them to compare the campaigns. People who took the survey clicked on each creative to see it full-size. The three campaigns (pictured below and in our survey) were:

(Campaign #1) A sponsored review by a blogger on a blog, including:

  • Full disclosure that this review is sponsored
  • A nice picture that is more personal, as a blogger would likely do -- which does not work to the blog's advantage, because BlogHer's studies show photos of food to drive higher clickthrough in advertising
  • A substantive review in the blogger's own words
  • No BlogHer branding or review badge to avoid either positive or negative bias (our sponsored campaigns include both textual and graphic disclosure)

(Campaign #2) A Facebook friends campaign, including

  • Starts with an enticing question, so the promotion is not obvious or a turn-off
  • A beautiful picture of food, which again we find drives higher clickthrough on BlogHer
  • An active conversation and more than one comment with a positive response, which again works to the advantage of the campaign

(Campaign #3) A celebrity-endorsed product, including

  • A beautiful picture of food, which drives clickthrough
  • A beautiful image of a celebrity, but not based on a real "brand name" to avoid negative or positive bias associated with a specific person
  • A key selling point re: caloric intake

→The majority of women trust social media -- but we trust blogs best. Why?

In the past year, on surveys ranging from Beauty to Consumer Electronics, we have consistently found that blogs drive purchase intent. Why do you think this is?

We believe this action is being driven by the high level of trust within the community, which is reinforced by the length and depth of the conversational format available on blogs and in blog comments.

So to marketers and advertisers seeking the powerful audience of women online, we ask this: Do you want more confidence that your relevant messages will actually convert into action? If so, we recommend you talk with bloggers.

We look forward to your thoughts -- about this post, the survey and our announcement.

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for Lisa, Jory and Elisa

BlogHer Co-founders


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