Brands are forgetting the basics of content marketing in the rush to use more visual mediums and push messages, according to a panel of industry experts hosted by digital news website The Drum.
Alpha Grid managing director Roslyn Shaw believes that consumers can be turned off by certain campaigns even before they have begun in earnest because they are centred around advertising. She believes that the length of video content has been a question that draws too much attention across the industry and that brands should instead focus on delivering added value “regardless of its length.”
Shaw added: “When users say they hate video advertising, they’re really saying they hate a video that’s dressed up like advertising. They’re so used to that, they’ve learnt to switch off. Consumers don’t mind brands, but they do mind you following that formula of advertising where you’re just preaching. The campaign has to look and feel like an actual piece of video content that people would want to watch.”
Making content that consumers want to engage with has been a major trend in 2018 and will continue to be so next year as brands shift from hard sells to personalised messages. Mediacom executive Nick Palmer also believes that the industry still hasn’t got its head around this shift in power and often fails to understand how video ads should work.
He said: “The language used around video advertising needs to get more advanced. Customers have never massively enjoyed advertising but they’ve always understood that there’s a value exchange somewhere along the line.”
YouTube is the biggest social video platform in the world. However, Palmer says subscription rates on it are still low, which suggests that consumers don’t mind ads if they effectively establish a value exchange. Also, they often view them as a means of payment. He added: “The dynamic is changing around the amount of content you get versus the amount of advertising you receive, which is where we need to find a balancing act.”
Amobee CCO Ryan Jamboretz pointed to the success of “advanced brands” as evidence that this balancing act can be attained quickly, and he expects both companies and consumers to figure it out during the next 12 months. Meanwhile, Unlimited Group CMO Sarah Shilling says that ad tolerance will rise if consumers get insights, value and relevance from them.
Data insights are another important trend for 2019, and Shilling says that brands that are effective at leveraging these insights are more likely to cut through the noise and gain traction. She said that these insights also provide a platform for a brand to deliver a message, gain trust and push the brand to a place where it wants to be.
Meanwhile, Palmer said that marketers have become “lazy” about brand building and that engagement and brand building can work in tandem to benefit everyone rather than being mutually exclusive benefits. Jamboretz concluded that getting back to basics and using “simple media planning techniques” can enable brands to deliver high-quality, powerful and consistent messages year over year.