A screenshot from IWC’s iPhone application
Nowadays brands are more and more willing to organise communications around original content, specifically designed to embrace their values and distinctive features. They produce content such as short movies (vs. the old TV. spots), publish books (rather than just consumer magazines), and organise special events that break the mould of the traditional, which garner significant amounts of free media coverage.
The Brand Content phenomenon is enjoying a coming of age, and brands should be devising global, unique content strategies, specific to the their issues, industry, objectives and universe. This paper aims to further understand the new movement and, above all, to deliver inspiring ideas for implementing a content strategy.
We conducted our research…
in France, using several subscription surveys (semiotic analysis, online qualitative forums, quantitative surveys), between 2007 and 2011, focusing on luxury and Brand Content.
We felt the need to come up with a specific expression to describe how brands take the lead in producing content (web content, short movies / programs, events, consumer magazines, books, etc.). When we took the “ed” out of branded content, we wanted to refer to content that was not only endorsed or sponsored by brands, but also created by and specifically for brands.
Our paper aims to provide luxury professionals guidelines and a compass to help them implement a content strategy: what type of content is right for the brand (entertaining, educational, practical) ? What is the media strategy? How can we measure the impact of the content campaigns in terms of brand reputation and image?
Most surprisingly we found…
that studies conducted among luxury consumers frequently demonstrated a lack of notoriety for high quality contents: quality alone is not enough to bring in a large audience. A clever distribution strategy is essential to increase the visibility of your content, especially on the web. All content operations should be connected to one another, and to the ad campaign. Each media platform should create a way for the consumer to access another part of the whole operation.
“ the market for Brand Content has become much more saturated. buzz and “wow” effects are no longer enough to garner attention ”
Not so surprisingly we confirmed…
that luxury companies are inherently places where creation happens. For luxury brands, creating content is a natural outcome, with huge reservoirs of content that they can tap into. The founding myth, the invention of a specific pattern, the birth of a new design – all are perfect in telling a brand’s story detailing their universe via content marketing operations.
Since our last study…
in 2007, the market for Brand Content has become much more saturated, in 2007 luxury houses were just starting to launch their first initiatives. Buzz and “wow” effects are not enough anymore to garner attention: audiences are more demanding when it comes to the quality and relevance of the content. Bearing this in mind, marketers have learned to better control their editorial strategy, to produce content according to the codes of their sector and the brand’s objectives (and universe). Consequently, the content industry has become more segmented and requires a global strategy (vs. isolated operations) to better target the brand’s diverse audience.
“ the first step in content creation is to clearly identify which brand elements are powerful enough to create a rich and dense universe and best reflect identity ”
If we were to conduct this study in 12 months time…
I would expect that brands would be developing more and more content in line with their universe. Brand culture will become a much bigger part of communications and marketing strategy.
If readers remember only one thing it should be ….
that to be successful in their content operations, luxury brands should first carefully examine and select the elements that are part of their brand’s heritage to design their strategy. The first step is to clearly identify which elements are powerful enough to create a rich and dense universe and best reflect the brand identity. Brands are reservoirs of content and knowledge, but they cannot randomly choose anything from these reservoirs to build their story.
Once they have selected the relevant content in their corpus, they can design a content strategy accordingly. Only after designing this strategy should content operations be executed. QualiQuanti has already conducted several ad hoc surveys to help brands better define their own culture, in order to create content in line with their identity.
Luxury Society is pleased to share QualiQuanti’s full Branded Content report with our readers. Please click here for the free download.
For more information regarding the research, please contact Daniel Bô via email: [email protected].