Redefining Content Marketing, part 1

At the end of August, brands, content creators, and influencers descended upon Park City, UT for Digiday’s Content Marketing Summit (DCMS). For three days they shared their challenges, expertise, and proven solutions for content marketing. Attendees’ existing assumptions about content marketing were challenged: what is it? How should it be created, distributed and measured? Here are some of the top learnings:

 

Create relevant content, and properly distribute it

We have all heard it: consumers respond much more to relevant experiences deployed at the right time through the right channel. But proper execution is still challenging. Start by understanding what your consumers need, the core of your brand (values, mission, personality) and your unique position to add value to a particular experience (service, product, category). Be true to the promises you are capable of delivering.

Shauna Keller, a digital manager of content, social and relationships at SkullCandy, encourages brands to first map out the consumer and business moments that would best illustrate their story, then outline the best channels for delivering those messages. Next, create the infrastructures, such as inter-departmental collaboration, budget and resource allocation, to properly support these initiatives. Test, learn, iterate.

 

Properly distribute your content

Distribution is also challenging, and you will not be successful if you create one type of content and blanket-distribute it across different channels. “Creation and distribution have to work hand in hand,” stated Heather Green, editor-in-chief and director of content marketing at Ceasar’s Entertainment. She recommends that your editorial and social teams work synchronously, so that your social team can get inbound traffic from content the editorial team is creating. Additionally, think through the channel––and the user behavior inherent to the channel––and deploy content that will help drive results depending on your intent (inform, entertain, inspire, etc). For example: if your brand is sponsoring a basketball game, channels like Facebook Live and Twitter are optimal for covering part of the event live and sharing relevant game stats; if you are sponsoring a music festival, Snapchat and Instagram are more appropriate channels given the highly visual nature of that content.

 

Leverage partnerships

Whenever possible, partner with like-minded brands to create and distribute relevant content. For example, Urban Decay partnered with Vice to create a lipstick influencer look book. They invited 100 influencers, including Orange is the New Black star Ruby Rose, to the Afterdark Launch party, where they launched their revamped lipstick collection and captured the influencers in 100 shades of lipstick. Urban Decay also recently partnered with Skullcandy to help them launch their Minkpink headphones with the #chicshit campaign.

Photograph of influencers Shannon Barker and Cait Barker for the #chicshit campaign launching Skullcandy’s Minkpink headphones

Continue with Part 2 and Part 3.