We Love The News: Digital experts talk about how local news is still a trusted, credible source
TWO young entrepreneurs who run their own digital marketing firm have spoken about how local newspapers continue to be trusted by younger generations.
Carl Hewitt and Reece Matthews, both aged 23, run Digital Dinos, a marketing firm based at Lakeside, North Harbour.
The company, which they started in 2016 after completing apprenticeships at Portsmouth College, has seen rapid success – and now employs seven people, with big plans including a rebrand planned for this year.
Despite the firm's focus on digital, and specialisms in Google, social media and websites, they have found young people are still turning to their local newspapers for reliable information.
A recent study found that newspapers and their social media platforms continue to be trusted sources of information for Gen Z and Millennials.
The study, led by the World Health Organisation, questioned 23,500 respondents aged 18-40 in 24 countries about their media consumption.
The research found that the social media profiles of newspapers (34.2 per cent) were more popular than government channels (28.3 per cent) as people searched for reliable Covid-related information.
Reece said this could be related to the fact that 57 per cent felt that the government wasn't giving them the full picture.
Reece said: ‘It's unsurprising that at times of crisis people look to trusted news brands such as The News to cut through misinformation.
‘By embracing digital platforms, the news media has been able to successfully promote key public health messages to even greater numbers of people.'
Almost 60 per cent of respondents were 'very aware of fake news surrounding Covid-19', and the slew of anti-vaxx conspiracy theories. This resulted in 40.8 per cent of social media users checking the accuracy of content before they posted it.
Reece, who grew up in Portsm outh, said that local news, especially The News, would always be special.
He said: ‘The News will always be close to our hearts. It covered our first bit of public news, right at the start, and it has covered our entire journey.
‘It is great as it covers all the city, from the small start ups to the larger firms. It plays a key part in creating the community of Portsmouth. It acts as a bridge, linking everybody in Portsmouth together.'
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