Put brand purpose at the heart
Ian Cafferky, head of marcomms at Telefonica UK, highlighted the importance of “content DNA”, or knowing a brand’s personality, in creating video.
“Content is identical to well done brand marketing in that you need a position and tone of voice,” he said.
Daryl Bosomworth, MD and co-founder of First 10, agreed, stating that strategy needs to be “front and center” of a brand’s content and needs to involve a big idea and purpose.
Barclays has employed this concept in order to tackle trust issues surrounding the banking sector, according to Mark Brayton, director of interactive marketing for Barclays Personal and Corporate Banking. The bank has rebuilt its purpose and values and has implemented this in the way it uses video.
The bank looks to “bring humanity to banking through video” through campaigns that showcase brand narratives surrounding Barclays’ Digital Eagles or Code Playground initiatives. For example, its #BetterOffOnline campaign offered help and tips about getting more out of online through video content which was shared on YouTube, social channels and on screens in Barclays’ branches, according to Brayton.
Understand your audience’s truth
Understanding your audience and developing insight is also crucial to content creation, according to Sport England’s head of brand and digital strategy Kate Dale.
The organisation’s #ThisGirlCan campaign, which gained viral success when it kicked off in January with an ad that showed real, non-photoshopped women exercising, was born out of insight which showed that 75% of women say they would like to exercise more, but refrain from doing so due to a fear of judgment, according to Dale.
It was also based on data which showed the gap between the numbers of men and women participating in sport remains wide.
“You have to have insight and data rather than just opinions,” Dale said.
Take a newsroom approach to content creation
Brayton also highlighted how changing customer expectations have meant Barclays has had to adopt an “always on” and “more reactive” approach, something it has done by adopting a “newsroom” approach to content by hiring a managing editor.
The move has meant the bank creates “consistent consumer-driven content”, according to Brayton, something that ITN Productions also looks to do.
Speaking at the event, Simon Baker, head of branded content at ITN Productions, said that by embracing real-time content ITN is able to “plan but react if need be” and also adopt an “always on marketing strategy”, meaning it can produce a “real-time continual stream of topical editorial content” between big campaigns.
Telefonica UK has adopted a similar approach, according to Cafferky, who said: “Thinking like a publisher is the first thing I try to instil in the team.”
Cafferky recommended that brands hire real editors and “mirror publishing houses” in order to develop more cost-effective and creative content.
Re-purpose content across all channels
Part of Barclays’ strategy means that all its channels are represented, as the bank claims it uses video “across the wider marketing mix, not just social and ATL”.
“The traditional mindset that video should be used through above the line and on social is still as important as ever, but you have to understand how video can be used across the marketing mix and customer journey,” Brayton said.
Abigail Blackburn, head of content at TUI UK & Ireland, highlighted the importance of this in the brand’s recent digital transformation, adding that by improving and developing its internal skillset it has been able to go from “typical to transformative” by editing and leveraging its video content across all channels.
Link back to metrics and ROI
Finally, the brands and agencies highlighted the importance of linking content back to metrics and ROI.
Patrick Kelly, director of agency sales at BrightRoll, said: “There’s an increased pressure to deliver ROI back to business, and you have to be able to map back to metrics.”
For Brayton, this means linking content back to Barclays’ brand tracking NPS scores as much as possible or by monitoring click-through rates or view volumes.
For Hazel Kay, head of marketing at Selfridges & Co, this means knowing the objective of content as it is created and following through.
The “Beauty Project”, which aimed to drive sales of its beauty ranges by targeting beauty and fashion followers through a 360 campaign, saw over 1 million video views, a rise in Google searches for Selfridges and beauty of 36%, and a double-digit increase in beauty sales, according to Kay.