A Brand's Online Presence Means Everything
Many companies have forged what they believe to be a formidable presence online, while other companies are still scratching their heads in sheepish astonishment at their own lack of online presence and know how. This digital footprint goes beyond the traditional digital advertising world of banner ads and pre-roll videos -- into what is known as content marketing.
In fact, content marketing is helping those companies that are so successful in growing their audiences by the thousands, and they are using techniques that are completely doable by any brand. Much more easily than many brand marketers may even suspect. In part one of this two part blog, Hollywood Branded provides a look into what separates Traditional Advertising and Content Marketing, and why brands need content marketing to survive.
The Secret Technique
Today, no matter the size of a brand, their online presence is their core identity as a company. It is their digital skin; and with this, they are able to project their brand’s message locally and even across the globe more efficiently. As the digital frontier continues to expand, companies across the globe continue to create their own versions of marketing think tanks whose purpose is to develop strategies to help them build their online footprint, and maximize their return on investment (ROI) in the process. And these brands are embracing content marketing, an advertising concept that thrives on frank and honest sincerity. And it may just be the defining tool for your team to leverage your brand as a top player in the digital space.
We live in a society that is digitally driven. This means that consumers demand the consummation of content to be readily available online, at all times, day or night. And there is a tremendous amount of content that has been created to help meet that demand. As a result, the average attention span of a customer has become drastically shorter, and harder to grab in the first place. This makes the idea of finding a way to capture their shrinking attention spans all the more daunting for brand marketers.
Sounds impossible, right? Do not fret! In this blog we are going to help give insight on how to actually get that consumer attention your brand wants.
Traditional Advertising Is Just Old School
Let's take a look at the old way of getting consumer's attention that has some pretty big limitations. Mainly, because it's just skipped over, fast-forwarded or out right ignored.
Traditional ads rely on precise placement, crafty verbiage, and exceptional creativity to capture a customer’s attention for a brief period of time. The ad needs to be exhilarating enough to command a few seconds of attention that will hopefully be enough time to communicate the brand’s message. Fingers crossed, of course.
Even the most brilliant work of marketing art is likely to be quickly forgotten and discarded when relying solely on traditional advertising. If it even gets noticed in teh first place.
Older forms of advertising such as billboards, TV ads, radio, and print ads rely on a century old approach. Though they definitely have legitimacy to their existence, the amount of work and money that this approach demands can seem daunting for most brands.
Not only does it cost A LOT, but traditional advertising can also cause a disconnect between the company, their product, and the consumer’s best interests. This is due to the nature of execution. Traditional ads must interrupt the consumer’s attention in order to be effective. How rude!
Billboards must be bold enough to grab the attention of the driver while not being too distracting. Television ads rip the consumer’s eyes away from what they really would like to be watching and instead force them to consume a commercial about, say, bendable straws. If selling your brand was difficult before, try selling bendable straws to an annoyed consumer who would rather be watching their cherished TV show. All you get is fast-forwarded.
Interruption is not the answer to successful advertising; at least, it is not the sole answer that will properly leverage a business in today’s global market. Consumers are smart, and they can smell when a brand is being too desperate. Instead, start thinking about employing marketing tactics that engage your consumer. To truly capitalize on the consumers that are your core target, emphasis on both traditional advertising and digital advertising should be adopted and employed.
Which leads to our next and final point. The method that you should be employing along with traditional marketing is, of course, content marketing.
Content Marketing Is Valuable AND Free
Content Marketing is the means of attracting and transforming prospects into customers by creating and sharing valuable free content. The purpose of content marketing is to help companies create sustainable brand loyalty and provide useful information to consumers, as well as create a willingness to purchase products from the company in the future.
Be wary though. The modern day customer is very intelligent and will likely not adhere to the same “in your face” marketing campaigns similar to previous generations. The internet has made it incredibly easy to become informed on all products, so most consumers do not need to be told to buy something. Instead, content marketing should be utilized to entice the consumer. To introduce the brand into their world using a storyline that gets them to pay attention. That could be a comedic video, or a serious article - whatever is on brand for your company. Whatever you do, you want to make the content actually enjoyable to be consumed.
And did I say free? Whatever type of content your brand creates, you need to give it away for free. Yes, you can capture email addresses in exchange for content that is behind a landing page to help you grow your email marketing lists. But in general, for the average consumer, placing the title of “free” on anything consumable increases the likelihood that it will be consumed. The same is true for your company’s content around your product or service. If it is free, it will be more likely consumed. The more a product is consumed, the higher the chance that your company will become a regularly digested commodity, and shared within that targeted consumer's world.
You want to plant the idea of your company in their minds, but still allow them to find satisfaction in concluding to buy on their own terms. They will feel more empowered, and you will look less like a pushy car salesman.
Don't Interrupt! Engage!
In other words, content marketing is not about explicitly selling products or services, but getting everyone interested in what is being offered. It is a method that is simple enough to be executed by any type of brand, making it a worthy investment of time and manpower for smaller companies and startups with the drive to implement it.
Do not, however, be completely enchanted by its simplistic elegance. Smart, consumer driven content is an absolute must in order to generate those ROI numbers that will make you the happiest. Remember, content marketing is geared towards selfless and frequent distribution. And not about hitting that viewer or reader over the head with content created to be a total ad. Selfishness, or the appearance thereof by making it too much of an ad, is an excellent method to derail your content marketing campaign.
In part two of our “Content Marketing" series, we’ll explain some easily applicable forms of content marketing that have worked exceptionally well for other brands. From videos, photos, podcasts, to blogs, content marketing is a sure fire way to grab your targeted audience's preciously limited time.
Get Into Other People's Content
Ultimately, what you are trying to create is your own form of branded content. Something that is crafted by your marketing team that engages while it educates. And it can be a compliment to go along with more traditional advertising.
Another option to keep in mind is leveraging other people's content, and having other content producers add your brand into their content, which we consider Product Placement.
Check out the blogs our team wrote on the subject:
- 3 Reasons Why Productions Use Product Placement
- 4 Common Myths About Product Placement Debunked
- 10 Surprising Reasons Why Brands Do Product Placement
- 8 Ways To Use Product Placement Assets To Amplify Your Brand Into Sales
- 3 Important Steps In Planning Product Placement Strategy
- Thinking Product Placement Cost Is High (It Isn't!)
And make sure you check out our e-book guide to Product Placement by clicking the image below! It provides insider advice on how you can best leverage content partnerships for your brand.