Branded Content… What it is?

I sometimes get confused into different marketing terms that are being used today. What I believe was, they all meant same. But after a thorough study I realized that though there are only minor differences, but these differences makes a huge impact on results. Off lately, I have been hearing a lot about Branded Content. We can call it a part of native advertising… not to be confused with embedded marketing.

What is branded content?

To put it simple, it is sponsored content. In 2001, a series of 8 short films was produced featuring BMWs, which was the actual intent of creating this series called The hire. (Source : Wikipedia). Branded content clearly talks about the product it has been paid for, not in disguise of some blog or some informative video. But, but but… the user who come across such piece of content always told about the sponsorship. So he can decide whether to agree with it or not. Branded content is very persuasive. To be very clear, if we are talking about branded content, we are not merely talking about text or images that can be posted across internet. It often includes offline form of marketing as well. Hoardings, conducting events, radio ads, t.v. commercials, promotional games etc.; all are part of it. The basic aim of disseminating branded content is to educate the consumer about the product.

How it is different from native advertising?

Practically, there is very thin line between branded content and native advertising. “These terms get interchanged within the wider industry and marketing discussions,” says Kathy Kayse, VP of sales strategy and solutions at Yahoo. When implementing practically, branded content tend to affect consumer’s perception. It educate them about the product, help them to connect with product, and create a belief about the company. On the other hand, native advertising is all about distributing this content in a right manner… to get the desired result and engagement. So we can say that both the form of marketing work hand in hand for best results. And there are many out there who often get confused that native advertising is just content marketing. So, I hope this breaks the myth for them.

Another thing that I must not forget to mention is that content marketing is an ongoing process. Whereas, Native advertising work as long as it is getting sponsored. However, it is supposed not to hamper the user experience.

Success stories…

  1. Bufferapp

This is favorite of many people like me, who religiously follow their blog. I’ve started reading their posts to get solution off my problems and eventually I realized I have started using bufferapp and become their fan. Their content was indeed branded but it engage the user by solving their problems.

  1. Red Bull

Red bull has always been a master of implementing strategies, be it social media marketing or branded content. Their storytelling way engage readers like anything. They have diversity on their Red Bulletin.

  1. P&G Everyday

They have used their products and content in a very powerful way. The best part about their content is they are presenting it in a very simple manner and yet effective. The reason is, they have first identified their target audience first.