We were super pumped to be part of one of the world’s largest online advertising event, Ad World 2022. Before the year closes, we thought to share key takeaways from the conference to lend insight to your own advertising efforts within the digital space.
As the first post in our Ad World series, we’ll focus on content marketing and how your brand can create content that converts effectively. We’ll take a look at what you can do to create more effective content, and how to ensure your content resonates among your audiences. Whether you’re marketing products and services online or using social media as part of a wider business strategy, we’ve made sure to deliver a post that’s filled with practical insight to help readers along.
Consistency is key when it comes to content creation, and messaging buckets are a means of making sure your content is consistently outstanding. Every brand seeks to stand out from the competition, so how exactly can yours achieve this? Courtney Tarrant, Ad World speaker, identifies four types of messaging buckets:
Credibility-related content shows your target audience why they should trust you. Examples of the content that fits into this bucket include certifications, testimonials, or articles about your product or service published in a magazine. While this is arguably the most important bucket, do note the tendency for most brands to limit themselves to only publishing this kind of content.
Feel Good content helps your target audience feel good about themselves for being socially responsible. This is especially relevant for Gen Z consumers who place a lot of emphasis on sustainability when making a purchase. Content about donating to a cause, making sure people receive their dues, or focusing on the humans behind a brand name are examples of content types that all belong within this content bucket.
Personality content gets your target audience to like you. This kind of content tends to be a little more creative or adventurous, and can include examples like image posts featuring cute and cuddly animals (even if your brand and business model don’t actually have anything to do with them). Try talking about your target market’s favourite food, for instance, or what they like to do for fun.
Vulnerability-related content lets your target audience relate to you, and can make them feel like you understand them. Content in this bucket is usually about your mission, your brand’s raison d’être or what makes your products unique. You might also talk about personal issues that your brand feels strongly about (e.g. domestic abuse) or a relevant issue that you’ve identified your target audience might be going through.
The first thing you need to do is identify your messaging bucket mix, because the content you create doesn’t have to be exclusive to a single bucket. Then, incorporate your buckets into the content you create. For example, the content we created for Guardant Health AMEA combines Credibility and Vulnerability by featuring testimonials, while also discussing examples of how the brand supports the care efforts for cancer patients.
In this other example of a piece of video content we created for FWD, we combined the Personality and Vulnerability buckets. The video features a relatable, light-hearted husband-and-wife scenario about buying insurance, as a way to deliver messaging that hits home for most of our intended viewers.
On the other hand, Feel Good and Vulnerability come together through the example of this piece of content we created for Melia Bali. Sustainability features prominently as a unique selling point, while our content also affirms the fact that people love to travel. Check out our case study in more detail here.
When creating your content, it also helps to be sure that you provide irresistible hooks and clear calls to action to guide your audiences along. For example: if you’re creating a video, make sure your script is clear and punctuated with effective plot devices.
For starters, it’s usually a good idea to test your content out on a stranger, or someone who has nothing to do with the digital marketing industry. If this isn’t possible, try showing your content to someone outside of your direct team members, to get an objective idea of its effectiveness.
However, that isn’t all we meant when we encouraged you to put your content to the test.
Repeat testing is the only way your brand will ever really know what resonates with your target audience. This is especially true since what works for one brand may not necessarily work for another — even if they belong within the same industry segment.
Try using different versions of your hook, or different CTAs for a start. You can also run tests by trying out different content formats: would a video or a GIF work better than a static image, or would a shorter video work better than a longer one?
It’s also a good idea to keep your eyes peeled for trends during each testing week. However, be prepared to afford a bit of patience when it comes to determining how long it will take to test your content. This may need to be factored into your media planning budget, as it depends on what sort of results you’ll get after a long enough run time of a test campaign. You’re going to have to test for a long enough time on a large enough sample size to truly achieve results that inform your content creation methods for the long-term.
As a last word of advice, remember that there is no such thing as flawless, foolproof content creation, and that the digital landscape is an ever-evolving one. Just create your content plan as carefully as you can, by identifying your messaging buckets and analysing the real-time results of your repeat tests.
Of course, creating content that converts on a regular basis can catch up with even the hardest working marketers—not to mention all the tests. If you could use a hand with your long and short-form content for social media, B2B, and travel, or content produced in collaboration with Key Opinion Leaders, let our content production team help.
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