In an era where social media, digital content creation, and digital marketing are key parts of your business’s impact, branded content matters!
Consumers are inundated with advertising efforts daily, so brands always need to find creative, yet subtle and impactful ways to reach audiences.
Branded content has the potential to both sell or market your brand, yet leave a lasting impact on your audience.
Nope, it’s not just about sticking a logo onto any and every piece of content you share. It’s all about weaving a story that entices your customers, enmeshes them in your business’ vision, and welcomes them to your brand.
We’ll show you how to do branded content the right way!
What Is Branded Content?
Branded content is a type of marketing whereby a business creates content that links to its brand.
But, we’re going to say it again: branded content is more than clumping your brand’s colors or logo onto an image or video.
While this might get the basic (and we mean super basic) “look” of your brand across, it won’t share what you’re all about. It also won’t show what value your brand brings to consumers.
Branded content should be all about sharing your business’ values, vision, intentions, and more.
The content must generate some value for the consumer while sparking positive conversations about your brand and appealing to consumer emotions. This helps to create a connection between value and your brand.
At its core, branded content is all about storytelling. And what do we know about good stories? Well, they’re all about using creativity and imagination to make a point and build a positive brand image.
Think about Marvel, for example. They’ve created a whole universe that works like a living breathing brand world – from the movies to the toys, clothing apparel, costumes, right down to the movie actors themselves.
Marvel audiences have an investment in the stories of this universe and the characters, too. This gives them faith and trust in the brand. Wild, right?
5 Tips To Create Effective Branded Content
Okay, so we’re not saying you should now go create a whole brand universe… At least, not yet, anyway! There are easier ways to get your branding right that don’t require a massive budget.
Here are a few:
The first two things any brand needs to do when creating branded content are perhaps the most important.
First, your brand must create a clear vision for your content. Define the values you want to convey, what you want your brand to say, and how you want to make the customer feel.
The second thing is to get to know your customer and what they are about. Gain an understanding of your target customer and what they value.
You also want to know what your customers are interested in at a given time by doing content research. This includes keyword searches, social listening, looking at competitor pages, etc.
From your customer research and your brand message, you can create authentic content that reflects your business and engages your customers.
Remembering the storytelling nature of branded content, you must also pay mind to your tone in your brand narrative. Keep it humane and relaxed and authentic in a way that connects with the audience.
Make it something worth remembering
There’s no point in creating forgettable content. You need to get creative and find memorable and entertaining ways to bring value to your audience. Think outside the box!
Consider the interests highlighted in your customer research to find creative ways to promote your brand. We’ve already touched on the effectiveness of creating brand worlds but there are other engaging ideas to try like:
- Influencer collaborations
- Blog articles
- Newspaper articles
- Short and feature films
- Live performances
- Talks and webinars
You don’t just have to choose one medium for your content. Try using a combination of media forms to share your brand message. Using video and audio forms, for example, is a great way to tell your story.
Both forms give you the power to curate an emotive brand experience. When running a brand campaign, this can include short videos, running a campaign podcast, working with influencers in the field, hosting webinars and talks, etc.
Not only should you consider mixed-media forms, but you should also distribute your content widely. Share to social media, on your website, through apps, using advertising tools, etc. That way, you reach wider audiences and your content becomes more accessible.
We touched on this briefly by including influencer marketing above, but collaboration is an awesome way to go for branding. Work with like-minded brands, individuals, and content creators to mold the vision of your brand.
When you collaborate, your partner brings with them their resources and expertise. You also gain access to an audience that trusts them and, so, will trust you by association.
It’s like making a new pal and joining their circle of friends. You meet through one person but may form strong bonds of your own.
Last, but never least, don’t be afraid to play around and have fun! Experiment. Get crazy. And break the boundaries of what you thought possible. After all, you are the writer of this brand story and you can craft it however you wish.
Use tools like vision boards, brainstorming, mind mapping, design platforms, and more to get your creative juices flowing. And when you’re stuck, you can always find inspiration from other big brands like Netflix, Red Bull, Subaru, and more.
It’s absolutely important to remember why we create branded content. It’s not about selling products and services. That happens when consumers believe in a brand.
Branded content is about creating a connection between the brand and its audiences. It aims to bring value to the audience, make an impact, and get people interested in your brand. Rather than increasing profits, the aim is to improve brand reach, awareness, and impact.
That is the End Game… Get it?