Branded content is the art of giving a twist to traditional marketing by telling a story and following a story arc as you would see in a film. If you are making original material that gives insight into your company or its backstory without outright selling your products on every other occasion, then your making branded content.
Check the video below for an example of branded content:
The world is changing, and people are growing tired of traditional advertising hence the growth in branded content and influencer marketing.
Research demonstrates that in mainly every category measured branded content has outperformed traditional marketing in influencing purchasing decisions. Overall branded content has the potential to create lasting impressions as they communicate feelings and provoke reactions not commonly seen in old-school ads.
How to make branded content?
Analyze what your company does and why it's essential to your customers. At first, you may not feel your company does anything extraordinary but look deeper. I don't care if you own a tire shop the fact that your keeping cars commuting safely on the road is a huge deal. So the message is to find how what you do makes a difference and build off of that and share it with the world.
Sometimes the simplest of things make the biggest impressions on others. Find what those things are for your company and tap into it.
So in our case, we make videos. What would be a good piece of branded content for us? I would say capturing the experience from start to finish of a live corporate videography shoot. The reason I would choose this as a good source of branded content is that usually the organizers working directly with us lean a lot on our expertise for the advice and comfort of knowing the audiovisual aspects of their event will be rock solid. If I capture this and share it with the world to see, then I'll be sharing that the value of what we do goes deeper than just making videos as we provide the experience and support of a helping hand throughout the entirety of the corporate event.
When you find that what you do encompasses more than just a product or service it means you are on the right track and I would suggest you consider creating content around it.
How to structure branded content?
As you start your journey into branded content, you have two good video structures to build off.
Long form content: The approach here is to make a short film. Find your theme and build your script accordingly. If you want to make a video about how you produce the freshest tomatoes, then you must establish your story and setting and create a narrative arc that progresses your story and characters forward. So let's say you set one of your growers as a central character it's important we learn who this individual is and why they're an intricate part of your system. This tomato grower is doing something that leads to a deliciously fresh tomato so putting a spotlight on him and his passion for growing tomatoes will lead to great content.
Episodic videos: This form allows you to make a consistent but a shorter form of content. Think T.V and the strategies television shows use to keep you entertained. Depending on your business you can create storylines around what you do and set goals so the viewers can follow along and see if these goals are getting accomplished. To break it down for you a film script is usually this. A distinct character that has a clear goal even though at times they are adamant about pursuing the goal, but it's clear what this goal is to the audience. Through the pursuit of this goal obstacles are introduced avoiding the character from reaching that goal easily, and every time the character is confronted with an obstacle, it disperses what we know as "drama" so following this and creating this structure around your everyday business can lead to some entertaining material.
Another approach to episodic content is to cover specific portions of your business on a weekly basis and releasing an episode every week on the same day. I can site one of our clients as an example; they are a tattoo parlor and every week they pick out one of the better tattoo pieces and make an episode around it. We get a friendly exchange between the tattoo artist and the client which translates well from an advertising perspective since it shows the experience of getting a tattoo at this particular shop and you can't get that with old form advertising. I will provide some examples of these episodes below.