With the rise of “owned” channels such as social media accounts and corporate websites, more and more brands are looking to distribute content directly to consumers as a major component of their marketing strategies.
The thinking is that where publishers owned the audience in the era of mass media, digital channels allow brands to engage more deeply and meaningfully with their audiences.
It’s a compelling idea and it’s one that many companies seize upon as a way of controlling customer data and driving down marketing costs.
Yet the reality is that in today’s fragmented and cluttered landscape, publishers still have a great deal of value to add. Rather than thinking owned media can mostly replace earned and paid media, savvy brands are looking at ways to use these channels in complementary ways. Here are five reasons that the right publishing partner can help you to launch a more successful branded content strategy.
1. You can leverage its credibility
Publishers have a rapport of trust with their readers. Provided your content is marked as sponsored or branded, it will benefit from a halo effect as a result of the consumer’s trust in the environment.
2. You can grow your audience
Growing an audience for your content organically is time-consuming, expensive, and limits your reach to people who are already the fans or customers you have on your email database. Yes, social media is a good way to distribute content to consumers, but it also amounts to preaching mostly to the converted.
By working with a publisher – be it through sponsorships, native advertising or even plain old display ads – you can extend your reach to people who do not know or who have not yet considered your brand. Building new relationships and growing awareness in this way will help you grow sales and acquire new customers.
3. A publisher may have sophisticated tools for tracking and measurement
In the era of big data, the brands that are most successful are those that can use demographic, behavioural, geographic, and even location data to understand their audiences and track the ROI of their campaigns. Most publishers will have made investments in tracking and analytics technologies that will help you understand how successful your content is and empower you to optimise your messaging and placements.
4. Publishers have expertise in producing compelling content
Perhaps the biggest benefit a publisher has to offer is its expertise and experience in creating content for its audience. It can help source or craft content that appeals to the segments you are targeting among its audience by giving you insight into what makes them tick and how to engage successfully with them.
5. It improves the discoverability of your content
If your content is on a large publisher’s site, it will appear higher and more often in search engine results when consumers search for relevant terms. That will further enhance your credibility and help bring attention to your brand from your intended audience.