The market is saturated, millions of pieces of content are published every single day. People are overwhelmed with ads and information. Which is making it harder and harder for brands to get the attention they deserve.
The main question is, how can you as a brand still stand out and grab people’s attention.
How to connect with your audience, impact them in a creative way and bring across what you stand for and do as a brand.
Branded content is a great solution.
What is Branded Content?
Branded content is focused on creating awareness and real engagement through content. It is a marketing technique wherein brands publish content that inspires, entertains and or informs. It is about creating content that is linked to the brand rather than showcasing the benefits of your products or services.
Traditional advertising is seen as a price we pay as the consumer to watch the content we want to see. Pre-roll ads on YouTube, TV commercials, Instagram story ads, etc. Branded content turns this around and is about creating content people actually want to consume.
How to approach Branded Content?
The main principles behind branded content are quality, relevance, and value. Instead of portraying information about the brand, branded content relies on using information about the customer. What is the story behind the average consumer, what do they get to experience when they buy a product from you or use your service. A good example of how to approach Branded content is Weber. The grilling company realized that their customers value the experience more than the product. So they created a platform and campaign called, BBQ Cultures. With beautiful visuals and stories, they take customers on a journey across all five continents and showcase the different BBQ cultures. Besides that, they now also integrated the principles of branded content to their entire digital ecosystem. Their website, app, and social accounts are filled with grilling tutorials, content about seasonal recipes and they also have users share their own Weber grilling experience.
What are the advantages of branded content?
Emotional connection – Good branded content tell amazing stories that excite the audience and spark emotions. These emotions will be associated with the brand, making users remember it for a long time.
Trust – Branded content is not looking for direct sales or conversion, it is about trying to impact the audience and spark conversation around the brand. Since the message of the content is not a sales pitch, it creates trust between the brand and the consumer.
Better positioning – Repeating a slogan over and over again may bring some short-term results but will not help you win in the long-term. This type of content is about telling stories that represent the brand’s values we want to associate with the brand. These positive associations with the brand are what we will remember.
Engagement and loyalty – Traditional advertising is invasive, it tries to grab your attention by running ads. Branded content not only seeks to be consumed voluntarily but is also focused on engagement. Consumers like branded content because they believe the content is more consumer-focused, it is created for them to enjoy. This allows for consumers to start a relationship with the brand at a much deeper level, resulting in more loyalty.
My suggestion to any brand that wants to stay relevant and grow, is to start applying the concepts of branded content to your marketing/advertising strategy.