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Open Mic Marketing

Branded content: Why influencer marketing is more than just the influencer

By Ben Jeffries, chief executive officer



The Drum Network article

This content is produced by The Drum Network, a paid-for membership club for CEOs and their agencies who want to share their expertise and grow their business.

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April 6, 2020 | 6 min read

In the past, creators have been used for their ability to build communities and to reach and engage large yet targeted audiences. While this is still very much happening, creators are more than ever, also being recognised for the high quality of the content that they create.

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Branded content: Why influencer marketing is more than just the influencer

Often, creators are able to generate content that is on par with that which a brand could create, and in the current climate, at a time when studios and offices are shut and brands are unable to create content in the ways they previously would, influence-led branded content is becoming more and more prevalent. As brands realise that creators can be used for so much more than their follower count and influence, branded content is the new craze in the realm of influencer marketing.

Here, we’re taking a look at why so many brands are choosing to work with creators to generate branded content on a more long term basis, especially in the current climate.

Many creators can work, even when you can’t

During the current global coronavirus crisis, studios and teams cannot work together as they ordinarily would. This makes it extremely difficult for brands to create quality content that is required for marketing campaigns. Without finding an alternative to produce branded content, brands will struggle to maintain the quality and quantity of content that they need to keep their social presence alive. It goes without saying that this is essential for all brands during this turbulent and crazy time, as people are looking for content to engage with more than ever.

Content creators are specialists in generating content that resonates with the people that brands are trying to reach, and they have the capability and capacity to create this branded content in times when the brand may not be able to. Additionally, many creators are accustomed to creating content from their own homes. Some have studios in their houses, while others specialise in producing content using digital applications or even stock imagery.

The situation we currently find ourselves in, therefore, may not be unusual for many creators; in fact, it may be very typical. While everything is up in the air, we would encourage brands to seek out those whose working lives may have been slightly less toppled - content creators.

Creators are masters of content creation

Many content creators these days have a creative talent that could see them work for big agencies or in-house in creative roles. Many of them have chosen to become creators for the freedom and lifestyle that it affords them. In this sense, creators can often be the most talented individuals to generate content for your brand. Brands should start viewing creators beyond the usual stereotypes.

Many creators are established artists, photographers, graphic designers, etc who have chosen to showcase their talents via digital mediums instead of, or as well as, pursuing paths that are considered to be more traditional. For this reason, working with creators to generate branded content often means that your brand benefits from the best content on the market, created by top talent.

Creators know what a brand’s target audience want

Content creators are experts at understanding their audience; they have built strong communities who are fully engaged with their content, and they know exactly what that audience wants to see. This knowledge comes from years of interacting with their followers, as well as experimenting with different kinds of content as their following has grown, and as a result they know exactly what works and what doesn’t. Interestingly, 80% of respondents in a recent survey said that influencer-generated assets performed the same or better than brand-created assets.

Creating branded content assets with a creator on board means that brands also get their expertise and input regarding the kind of content that the brand’s target audience wants to see. This is a unique perspective that many brands will struggle to ascertain. Thus, for brands, working with content creators as part of their wider marketing mix, or even within their creative team, can add a huge amount of value.

You’ll be able to repurpose the content

Engaging content creators to produce branded content for your brand can save a lot of time and money. Brands are able to repost or repurpose creator content for their own marketing initiatives. This may be on social media; on their own social channels or in social ads, for other digital channels; for instance, for use on their own website or on banner ads, or for use outside of digital - for instance, on billboards, in magazines, or on a TV ad (although these mediums may be less relevant currently).

This ability to repurpose premium content often means that marketers can save budget by creating branded content with a creator. According to a recent study, 41% of marketers said they have saved budget on content creation by engaging creators. On top of that, repurposing the content allows you to use the feedback that you’ve already received from the audience to tailor the campaign to specific segments of your audience.

This kind of trial and error tactic works well when repurposing content and can give a brand more detailed information on their audience. It should be noted that usage rights must be agreed with the creator, before the campaign, as part of the campaign contract. How do I work with influencers to create branded content? Working with content creators to create branded content needn’t be hard.

We’re currently working with some of the biggest global brands to create amazing content at a time when their teams are unable to create the content themselves. With our verified and trusted community of creators, we’ll be able to pair you with the talent that can generate branded content and assets for your channels. Get in touch today to learn more about working with Influencer to create branded content that resonates with your target audience.

Ben Jeffries, CEO & co-founder, Influencer

Open Mic Marketing

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