The production of content is a necessity within the digital marketing strategy of a brand, you know, is not it?
In the end, 71% of Brazilian companies already adopt a content strategy ( Content Trends 2017 data ). What many people do not know is that there are different ways to produce rich material for the internet, generating commitment among consumers and improving brand recognition.
One of the most common confusions is the distinction between Branded Content and Content Marketing . Although many people believe that it is a subdivision, these strategies have quite different objectives and characteristics.
In summary, the choice must be made according to the company’s objectives in the market and in marketing . Nothing prevents the two from being produced simultaneously, but it is important to understand the differences so that each one is, in fact, effective and generates significant results for the brand.
Branded Content and the positioning of the brand image
The Branded Content is directly related to the production of content in order to improve the positioning of the brand in the market and transform the public’s vision of the company behind the products or services offered.
This strategy can be translated as “brand content”, also known as “brand entertainment”. The proposal is that the consumer has access to content that brings fun and information at the same time, making it clear that the material was produced by a company.
For example: if a make-up brand pretends to sign on the market as one that is in search of self-esteem and appreciation of the beauty of women, can produce a video with ordinary women talking about what they like most in themselves, while they test the products of the brand.
The idea is precisely that: to produce a content that reinforces the positioning that the brand has or intends to have in the market, making the public feel empathy and identification.
In the example of the make-up brand, for example, women with self-esteem problems could identify themselves and look for more information about the products offered, increasing the possibility of purchase intention.
Therefore, in addition to passing relevant information on the standardization of female beauty , the brand generates commitment among its target audience and, in some cases, manages to use that content as a buzz marketing strategy .
There will be a connection, almost a feeling of gratitude among the audience, causing them to be incentivized to make the purchase of the product.
The objectives of Branded Content
The intention of this content production is to ensure that the public remembers the brand when a need arises. The objective is to capture the attention of the consumer, touching on a subject that he did not expect to be related to a product.
A person who has socialization difficulties may feel identification with a content produced by a brand of toothpaste, for example.
What does the product have to do with the problem? It is enough to show that the contact with others sells trust, relating this characteristic directly with a beautiful and imposing smile.
This is just one of several examples that reinforces the “power” of the brand in a way that the public never imagined, making it identify itself after having contact with that content.
Some of the objectives of the brand content are:
- Positioning of the brand in the market: when the proposal is to demonstrate a brand differential for the public, creating a sense of added value and confidence in the act of purchase;
- Improvement in the value of the brand: recognition of the company as an expert in the market, giving the feeling of leadership, even when that is not the reality in the sales data;
- “Word of mouth” marketing: when the content is so interesting and touches on an issue on the rise in society, consumers go on to talk about the content produced in conversation wheels, indicating the product for friends in a non-suggestive way;
- Spontaneous recall : the consumer will remember the brand at different times, either in the act of purchase or in a conversation about the matter. The brand becomes a reference in its niche of action.
It is important to remember that the objective, in general, is not the direct sale of a product, but the positioning of the brand in a differentiated way. It is about the development of a good relationship with the public.
Examples of attractive marking
1. Intel and the human processor
The disclosure of the launch of a new computer processor needs to be thought out with great care, because if the content released is very technical, the general public that buys these machines will not have the least interest. Meanwhile, if it is something very vague, it will not be possible to perceive the differential of the product.
For that reason, Intel innovated with an action that mixed the online world with the offline one. The proposal was to present a computer that thought like a human.
For that reason, the raider Emicida was invited to do a show for 150 people , which was broadcast live over the internet, while the online audience sent words that should be included in the rhyme via Twitter. The brain waves of the artist were captured and projected onto the stage, showing that the computer would work with similar reasoning.
The hashtag came in first place in the TrendTopics and obtained nearly 2 million views.
2. The Apothecary and the beauty that transforms
The beauty products brand El Boticário, organized an action in Rio de Janeiro and produced an exciting video that was published on the Internet. The brand joined the Pacifying Police Unit (UPP) for such a daring action.
A dance was organized for several girls who were turning 15 years old, who lived in the Morro de la Providencia. All the birthday girls were received at the National Historical Museum to receive a kit with beauty products, in addition to being made up by professionals.
The documentary called “Beauty that transforms” shows the difficult reality faced by the inhabitants, showing the importance of girls feeling valued, even when the world does not seem to matter.
3. Volvo and confidence in their vehicles
The Swedish Volvo has also worked very well in this strategy. In one of its several actions, the brand invited actor Jean-Claude Van Damme, famous for his action films, to show that his trucks had one of the safest addresses in the market.
The video, which was shared on social media in 2013, shows the actor doing a spacing – total leg opening on the floor – while two trucks passed by him, in an extremely small distance. The result was a video that hit 90 million views and a scene that could be from a successful movie.
The result was the reinforcement of the information that Volvo has one of the safest trucks in the market, which is excellent for the image and for the sales of the company.
Tips for an effective Branded Content
As in any other strategy related to the world of marketing, there is no magic formula for the production of content oriented to branding . However, there are some issues to remember to ensure good results:
- Always think of the essence behind the product
- Understands the difficulties and needs of the public
- Create an empathy relationship
- Work with mental triggers
- Find the differential of the brand or product
- Be creative and innovative
Content marketing and the focus on the customer experience
Unlike a good Branded Content strategy, Content Marketing produces material that does not always go directly to the image of the company.
The proposal here is completely different, despite maintaining the focus on the relationship with the public and the disclosure of the brand subjectively.
This production focuses on the resolution of problems of a consumer, who does not need to know the brand to reach it as a solution to something that is happening.
Content Marketing is directly linked to the consumer’s day .
It is a purchasing process that goes from the identification of a pain, something that needs to be solved, to the identification of a solution and, finally, the meeting of a product that will exactly satisfy the need of that individual.
It is about the production of relevant material that will be delivered to a consumer in a moment of doubt, encouraging them to make a purchase decision through different contents.
The idea here is to be useful to the potential customer, showing that that brand has a product that solves their problems in some way.
A good example of this situation can be a brand of organic products that needs to be positioned as the one that will bring the best quality of life for people. Thus, she must produce contents about natural life, diets, well-being and the advantages of organic food consumption.
A person who searches on Google, for example, about how to be healthier, how to improve their diet, etc., can reach the site of this company and know their products as a result of their search.
Obviously, this attraction through Google is just one of several possibilities.
Content Marketing can be used in blogs , social networks, email marketing, YouTube and various other channels. It is enough to produce relevant content that does not only deal with the benefits of the brand, showing the products as an end to the problem already identified by the consumer.
Once the public is attracted to the brand by identifying a problem, it finds a viable solution through the information offered by the company (independent of the acquisition channel) and, finally, it is converted by the presentation of the differentials of the brand through some material produced by the company, it is a content marketing strategy.
The objectives of a content marketing strategy
The objectives of Content Marketing, as you should imagine at that point, can be several. The focus of this production is to offer relevant information for the person, whether it is to make a purchase, know the brand or solve their doubts before making a decision.
But it is important to have clarity in what is intended to be achieved so that the results are analyzed later. Among the most common are:
- Perception of the brand as authority: when a brand manages to solve all the doubts of an individual about the operation of a product, its advantages and in what way it should be used, it creates the sensation that it is a specialist in the market niche in which acts, ensuring greater consumer confidence at the time of making the decision to close business with the brand;
- Improvement of the organic scope of the brand: when producing relevant content on a certain subject, which does not refer directly to the disclosure of a product, the organic scope of that material is something that should be expected. It is very common to combine Content Marketing strategies with Inbound Marketing , precisely for that reason. If your brand produces content that answers the questions that people are asking themselves on the Internet, it is enough to find a way to reach them;
- Support for customer service: the production of rich content that responds to the doubts of the consumer also helps to reduce costs in customer service significantly, since, instead of having a specialist to respond to the public in real time , produce a text that answers the questions and makes it available to the client. Thus, the problem will be solved with greater agility and in a more dynamic way;
- Generation of public commitment: the public feels more committed when they have access to rich content, which helps them make intelligent purchasing decisions, instead of finding only ads with the advantages offered by a brand. Internet users who reach the content and recognize your relevance, will become promoters of the brand quickly;
- Increase the conversion of potential customers: imagine a racing fan who finds a blog full of advice on sports practice, tips and instructions for clothing and tennis to improve their performance. If this blog is an e-commerce that offers these products, the visitor will be easily transformed into a customer. That is, a significant increase in sales of the company.
The objective will depend on the need of the company and, of course, it is possible to combine more than one of them to maximize the positive results.
It is important to remember that, according to the need of the brand, the chosen objective must guide the characteristics of the production and the performance metrics to be accompanied.
Examples of successful content marketing
1. Hellmann’s helps you cook
Going far beyond the production of a blog with recipes and cooking tips, Hellmann’s decided to innovate. The brand joined the network of supermarkets St. Marché, in the city of São Paulo, showing that it is possible to build consumer loyalty by using content.
The proposal consisted of the following: if the customer left the supermarket only with a can of brand mayonnaise, he would receive a recipe to show how the product could be used.
But, the most incredible part of any strategy is that if the customer buys other food products, such as bread or chicken, for example, the brand sent a recipe in which the mayonnaise was used with the remaining merchandise of the cart, further facilitating the product experience by the consumer in the kitchen and showing different ways to use the Hellmann’s can.
This is an example of Content Marketing that seeks commitment and loyalty, as the consumer already knows and buys the brand’s products.
2. Patagonia and the natural way of life
The Patagonia sportswear brand is an excellent example of brand that produces Content Marketing in different channels. Your audience is formed by a group of people who are interested in adventure and nature, as it sells clothing and accessories for practicing sports in the most diverse environments.
The company uses this strategy long before it becomes a trend. The blog of the brand was launched in 2005, exploring topics oriented to environmental issues and, later, advice on sports practice.
The public’s commitment was the result achieved, reinforcing the concept of the spirit of conscious adventure.
In addition, all these issues are also worked on the other social networks. In Tumblr, for example, the consumers of the brand share their stories giving testimonies about situations that happened using the clothes of Patagonia.
That is to say, the strategy of the brand not only generates conversion, but also a healthier relationship with the public, being respected for sharing the same principles.
3. HubSpot as a specialist in the niche market
HubSpot has one of the most famous marketing tools in the market today, being marketed in countries around the world. Therefore, it needed to position itself as a specialist in its market niche, gaining the confidence of professionals in the area.
Thus, the company began to produce content in various formats to attract that audience.
In addition to blogs that address much more than marketing automation – the objective of the company’s tool, articles are published on various topics: branding, advertising, content, etc.
That is, whenever a professional has a doubt, they are there to answer. This makes it recognized as an expert, who knows how a good automation should be developed.
In the end, what is necessary to have a successful Content Marketing?
In summary, Content Marketing requires that the brand thinks about the consumer before thinking about it .
By recognizing the real reason why people buy your product it is possible to start the production of material that meets their demands.
This is a more focused strategy for conversion after contact with the content, however, it must be elaborated carefully redoubled to guarantee the trust of the public, showing that the product or service offered is going to make a significant difference in your routine.
Some important tips to develop efficient planning are:
- Make a person based on customer data;
- Present the product as a consultant, not a seller;
- Understand how the consumer’s day works;
- Focus on the actions in solving the person’s problems;
- It shows the added value that the product offers;
- It attracts the public in a natural and contextualized way.
Branded Content X Content Marketing: who won the battle?
The truth is that both strategies have their advantages and it is not possible to say, in a generalized way, which companies should invest. It is necessary to analyze the situation, define the objectives, understand the demand of the public and, finally, reach a conclusion.
However, it is possible to indicate the best strategy based on the needs of the brand. Then, let’s see.
Reflect on the following questions and understand what your demand is.
When does your brand need a Branded Content strategy ?
- It is necessary to create the recognition of the brand among the public
- The company wants to demonstrate its values
- The idea is to launch a product or make an advertisement in a different way
- If you want to escape from the traditional ways of advertising
- There is a need to transform the image of the company in the market
On the other hand, why does your brand need to create a Content Marketing strategy ?
- To create a relationship closer to the consumer
- You need more authority in your performance niche
- I want to attract the public in a more natural and contextualized way
- It is necessary to reduce the cost of acquisition per client
- It is necessary to educate the market about the utility of the product or service offered
Surely, at times, these goals are mixed and it is possible to use one or another strategy to achieve them.
This happens because the production of contents of each brand will be done in a singular way, in search of the creation of your identity and directed to your specific audience.
The most interesting thing, in fact, is to mix the two possibilities. In the end, the relevant content is never too much. A well produced material is capable of generating much more commitment and, consequently, purchase opportunity than an advertisement.
Therefore, the suggestion that you have is: study the possibilities and understand the demand of your brand. Only in this way will it be possible to define the ideal strategy to achieve the established objective.