“I realised the importance of having a story today is what really separates companies. People don’t just wear our shoes; they tell our story.” – Blake Mycoskie, CEO of Tom’s Shoes
At Brawl, we set out to tell great stories through compelling content. But there is a science that sits behind the art.
Content marketing has grown in popularity as a marketing tool. Its ability to drive deeper relationships between brands and their audiences has driven a new focus in marketing strategy.
We believe there are fundamental building blocks in every successful content strategy. And the decision to create and use content should be one based on clear goals and approached in a measured way.
When clients approach us to create content they often have a fixed idea about what they want. However, what they want isn’t always what they need. Our job is to ensure we produce something that will deliver results. We look at a film as part of a sustained campaign to deliver short and longer term goals. To do that we need to do some upfront planning before anyone even thinks about putting pen to paper, or finger to keyboard.
Like any creative project, we start by breaking down the brief. What are the commercial realities and objectives of the business and how can content help them deliver their targets? Every campaign has an objective be that to raise awareness, generate leads or change opinion – campaign success isn’t necessarily about the number of views and whatever we create needs to recognise this.
Questions like, ‘where are we now and where do we want to get to’ are key. But while lots of clients would claim they want to be the next Paddy Power or Aldi with large followings and high profile, we need to work out what’s the actual goal, not just a vanity. Are they really ready to be Paddy Power? Do they have an appetite for risk or would the chance of negative headlines send them running for the hills?
It’s all in the numbers
Once we’ve worked out what the goals are we need to look at what we need to produce and where it needs to go. These days it isn’t one size fits all. What works on one channel won’t necessarily work on another and what channel works isn’t clear cut either. This is where we rely on the numbers and find the curveballs.
What does the analytics say? This isn’t just about cherry picking stats; we dig into the real numbers. Where are they regarding engagement and reach? It’s easy to say that a following as doubled, but it’s important to look at what it cost to get there. Are they the right followers, are they engaged and if they aren’t engaged, how can we change that?
If we look at the analytics and find that people turn off or move on after 30 seconds, then we know that we need a maximum 30-second video, not a 2-minute in-depth piece. Or if we see that Facebook provides 85% of views then we know that we don’t need a voiceover, captions will work.
We used our process with Iceland to help the brand maximise its sponsorship of Iceland national football team during the Euros.
The campaign surpassed expectations with record brand reach and engagement results. The #comeoniceland campaign created 1.9m video views, 148m impressions, and a unique reach of 12.1m.
Perhaps in the fast moving world of digital storytelling and social media it may seem a little dull to hark back to the earliest principles of marketing. But in our experience, a truly effective campaign, is built on a deep understanding of the audience and the brand, along with an obsessive focus on the metrics to inform the ‘how’ of connecting the two.