There were two key takeaways from the latest Brand Storytelling conference which featured talks from experts from big brands, agencies and media outfits in Park City, Utah, USA late last week. The first takeaway was that instead of placing a brand at the centre of a story, it is more effective to create a story that the brand supports. The second insight was the importance of creative publishing for social.
Numerous figures within the marketing industry gave presentations about the future of branded content and what is likely to dominate campaigns and strategies during the next 12 months. A recent study found that three-quarters of B2B marketers are heavily focused on producing engaging content in 2017, so the latest trends could help them achieve their goals.
Fullscreen Media reminded content creators that making a brand the central theme in a story rarely works and is not as valuable as having a brand support a great story. The CMO of the youth media company, Alan Beard, said: “Like a boomerang, if you throw the story away from you, it will come back.” Beard believes that content is less likely to resonate with an audience if it is solely about a brand.
Youth content production company Astronauts Wanted was up next, and it argued the case for a unique and compelling Gen Z audience, defined as those born in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Staff members Christine Murphy and Johnny Blitstein said that Gen Z is generally comprised of “anti-teens” who have skipped past adolescence entirely due to the pervasive and abundant nature of information in the digital
Internet age. This could make marketing to youngsters quite difficult in the meantime.
In terms of video content creation, Senior Producer Sydney Hass and Executive Producer Sara DeCou of mobile start-up WeBuyGold said that shooting, editing and producing clips on smartphones could be key in enabling brands to reach consumers on platforms such as Snapchat, where ten billion videos are now viewed every day. Docu-style content, serialised content and celebrity features are also recommended to pique viewers’ interest.
Finally, Fox Networks Group President of Advanced Ad Product, Joe Marchese, argued that there is still a place for TV advertising, as consumers don’t like ad interruptions. He claimed that ad viewing time is higher across Fox’s channels as compared to platforms such as YouTube and Facebook.