In the past, brands communicated in an intrusive and not very personalized way. Today, new strategies and technologies allow brands to have a closer dialogue with the customer. The dynamics of brand disclosure have changed and brands are now associated with relevant information that they pass on to the consumer.
It is in this context that the concept of branded content arises, that is, the creation of content by a brand that meets the expectations and needs of its target audience. This concept is part of a set of previously planned actions that aim to increase recognition, and improve the experience and desire for a certain product.
First of all, who takes the leading role in the branded content strategy? Without a doubt, our consumer is the central piece. All content is produced with the aim of helping the customer and indirectly influencing their decisions.
Practically speaking, what are the advantages?
– Stirring the unconscious: Imagine you need to buy a bike, it is very likely that if you receive tips on how to care for your bike, you will remember the brand in question. This happens because, by creating useful and relevant content for the client, you will strengthen the relationship with him, and, consequently, the probability of him remembering the brand increases.
– Generate trust: This is a differentiating factor at the moment of decision. If the brand in question has already helped or entertained you on a certain occasion, the likelihood of buying that product increases because you will feel you can trust someone you already know.
– Not being intrusive: Nowadays, brand communication is continuous and the big challenge is to make your presence felt without invading the client’s space. The solution to this is exactly branded content, through the creation of a wide variety of content (blog articles, videos, podcasts, infographics, etc.).
How to produce branded content?
This concept is very much associated with curiosity and surprise, that is, the idea of the brand offering content that exceeds the expectations of the target audience. If this happens, the probability of generating interest will be greater and, consequently, the consumer will identify himself with the brand.
This is why many brands choose to develop light and entertaining content in a spontaneous way, never forgetting that the content must be relevant in order for there to be a spread of that content.
But is there a difference between branded content and content marketing?
It is natural that after understanding the definition of branded content, there may be some confusion about the concept of content marketing. However, the two concepts, despite sharing the same tool (content), have different ways of using it.
In branded content, the focus is on brand positioning and promotion. On the other hand, content marketing has a broader objective, because it seeks to influence the consumer to convert. The latter is very much associated with the famous sales funnel, that is, the consumer’s path from discovering the company to deciding to buy.
In fact, both strategies complement each other. An organization can and should use both in order to generate brand awareness and simultaneously improve sales.
By Gonçalo Figueira, digital marketeer at Media em Movimento