As you can imagine, we do quite a bit of brand work. Frankly, it’s one of our favorite things to do. Working with new product launches or start-ups is particularly exciting. The entire world is at our fingertips. We can craft the perfect story and message to encapsulate the heart and purpose of the organization.
Even when established brands need help taking their brands in a new direction, the work is exhilarating. I don’t think there is anything more challenging or more rewarding than boiling down a company’s tools, technologies, people, and culture into a succinct, powerful story that helps them connect with customers.
Great companies have personality. They have history and stories to tell. They have unique products and services. They aspire to solve problems and serve their various market segments.
However, one thing that often gets overlooked when companies build their brand is trust.
The biggest misconception around content marketing might be that it’s a recent innovation. The truth is, it’s far from it.
Way back in 1895, John Deere started delivering a monthly publication called “The Furrow” to farmers. The magazine not only told them great things about John Deere products, it also included tips on how to be a better farmer. In the grainy, black and white pages of “The Furrow”, content marketing was officially born.
It wasn’t long before other brands followed -- Jell-O soon started printing recipe books and Proctor & Gamble invented the soap opera to sell more soap. Today, there’s not a single B2B client I meet that doesn’t discuss thought leadership as a goal, or a B2C client that doesn’t want to differentiate through branded content.
But the world has changed since John Deere’s time. It has gotten harder to earn the trust of consumers because so many of them have been burned by marketers in the past. Marketers told them smoking was good for them. Marketers told them dried up shrimp were magical creatures called “sea monkeys” and that they could buy real X-Ray glasses for a dollar.
Consumers have been conditioned to think you’re always trying to sell to them. That they can’t take you at your word. Today, it’s not enough to come right out and tell people why you’re a great brand. Not the way John Deere was able to do it. Today, you have to do more.
To say Paid Media moves fast is an understatement. If you're not on top of the latest news and updates, you'll get lapped by the agencies who are. So here's what's been happening over the past several weeks, including the biggest changes from Google and Facebook among others. Stay tuned for monthly recaps so you're never in the dark about what's new in Digital Paid Media.
A year ago the marketing world was abuzz about “snackable” content. Everything was getting shorter. Blog posts were getting replaced by lists. Lists were getting replaced by infographics. Infographics by short videos. Videos by short blurbs. And on and on and on. Marketers were panicking over shortened attention spans and trying to optimize everything for tiny mobile screens.
But a pendulum can only glide so far in one direction before it starts to swing back the other way. So, despite the rise of snackability, long form content never actually bit the dust. And by now I think it’s proven that it never will.
Do you ever feel like you might die if you don’t check Facebook? You know there’s nothing on there you need to see, but for some reason you still feel like you need to check.
Well, you’re not crazy.
Research indicates that the need to connect socially with others is as basic as food, water and shelter. But despite knowing this, many marketers find themselves frustrated when trying to reach people on Facebook – the ultimate human connector online -- and I believe that’s due to one simple concept:
The only constant on Facebook is change.