Sky IQ is blogging for LIVE@AdvertisingWeek and picking out its top buzzword from each day of the event.
Day 2: storytelling
Hannah McMullen, head of marketing for Sky IQ, explains:
“Day two at Ad Week and the buzz phrase on everyone’s lips was “branded content.”
Arguably though, what people mean by this is in fact storytelling.
There has been a much debate about good and bad branded content, from whether consumers buy-in to it, to what device or channel it should be on. But for me it was Matthew Hook (@matthewadamhook), from Carat, whose comment stood out.
His telling observation that “branded content shouldn’t become this year’s solution looking for a problem,” highlighted a bigger issue. What we are actually trying to get to is storytelling.
The storytelling phrase was first used by LiquidThread MD, Andrea Brown, during the branded content session and reiterated by Morgan Spurlock later that morning. Both had different approaches to the challenge of brand storytelling, but the message was clear: you need to identify how and what you want to communicate before you do it.
Andrea explained how effective brand storytelling starts with understanding how the consumer ticks, bringing together data and storytelling (or the maths men and the madmen).
This approach to data is one we should all be taking.
When data is baked in, and not bolted onto a campaign, the creative will work all the better and result in higher ROI.
Morgan Spurlock’s approach focused on aligning the ideology between consumers as content creators and brands. With people creating masses of their own content, companies should no longer focus solely on making an advert to promote a product, but also develop an engaging story and identity which consumers want to actively engage with.
The takeaway message from countless references across the day was that interesting and effective brand stories don’t start with “we need to create something”, instead they start with a clear idea of the brand values and channels your customers are using.
From that the story will shape itself.”