Often, attempts at interpreting branded content straddle the wire of native advertising and advertorials before falling in to the abyss of general advertising – so what is it exactly and what does it offer that traditional channels do not already deliver? One working definition (through Ipsos’ partnership with Oxford Brookes University and The Branded Content Marketing Association) is: “Branded Content is content fully or partly funded by a Brand which promotes the Brand’s values and provides something of value to audiences – often by entertaining, informing and/or educating” Now while this definitely goes a long way to defining what it is, there are two inherent foundations which require amplification:
- It’s experienced: there’s a tendency to be Facebook/YouTube/Twitter myopic, but branded content doesn’t necessarily need to be clicked or viewed – as evidenced by popular Red Bull events. Even The Lego Movie counts as branded content!
- It’s something people choose to spend time with: Branded Content at its best is unlike traditional advertising. Whilst conventional advertising is, in essence, an interrupter designed to snatch attention from something else; content is creativity enjoyed at an individual’s discretion. Crucially, the consumer is in control – not the brand.
Unfortunately, in the same way that reach does not necessarily equal actual branded recognition and number of click-throughs does not always tally with campaign success – understanding how branded content works is tricky. We all have examples of good content, but this tends to be limited to true zeitgeist material (think ‘Always’, ‘Nike’ or the ALS Ice Bucket challenge). In other words, it’s probably gone ‘viral’, been viewed and shared over a million times or the IPA have flagged it as laudable work. But does this tell the whole story? How do people really engage with content in the real world? Do people respond to content as anything other than highfalutin advertising? And though we know what qualifies as successful content, what does content need to do for it to be successful?
Ipsos Encyclopedia - Peoplemeter (aka Audimeter)
Definition: Peoplemeters electronically record who is watching TV and what they are watching. They are a key component within Television Audience Measurement (TAM) systems. The installation of metering equipment generally requires the building and maintenance of a household panel and, once built, delivers viewing data to the industry on at least a daily basis with a high level of granularity in terms of minute by minute behaviour.
Ipsos Encyclopedia - Marketing Mix Modelling
Definition: Marketing mix modelling (abbreviated as 'MMM') is an analytical approach that uses historical data, such as retail audit data, syndicated point-of-sale data and companies' internal data, to quantify the sales impact of various marketing activities. Mathematically, this is done by establishing a simultaneous relation of various marketing activities with the sales, in the form of a linear or a non-linear equation, through the econometric/statistical techniques.
Ipsos Encyclopedia - Emotional Measure
Definition: Understanding emotional response is a critical dimension to assessing the strength and effectiveness of all types of marketing elements from concepts to advertising, product experience, fragrance, packaging and promotion of all kinds. It has been long accepted that brands that evoke positive emotions have the highest chances of being preferred and purchased. So measures that can help us profile consumer response are invaluable to our understanding of marketing and brand impact.
Ipsos Encyclopedia - Brand Essence
Definition: 'Brand essence' is a compact summary of what a brand stands for, typically as part of a more detailed brand key (e.g. Aaker's 'Brand Identity Planning Model' or Ipsos' 'Brand Mandala'). The brand essence is a single thought, typically expressed in 3-5 words that captures the soul of the brand; the brand's fundamental nature or quality. Some examples are 'Disneyworld: Magical Fun', 'Starbucks: Rewarding Everyday Moments', 'McDonalds: Food, Folks & Fun', 'BMW: Driving Pleasure', and 'Nike: Authentic Athletic Performance.'