Archive for the 'webisodes' Category


Branding Content: How creating a persona for your brand creates ROI

Branded content is essentially a fusion of entertainment and advertising that has been around for decades, just think of soap manufactures and the soap opera. With social media and the increasing prevalence of mobile apps in our daily lives, branded content seeks to have an increasingly large role in marketing and advertising of brands in the future.

Branded content can be anything from a short film, music, game, blog, mobile app, newsletter, blogzine, microsite or real-life event. The content merely exists to entertain and educate the consumer, while conveying subtle brand messages in the mean time. But more than this, branded content creates a persona for your brand and helps engage target audiences in a reciprocal relationship.

The idea for a brand is to listen to online conversations and establish what interests your target audiences. Is there a need or desire for certain information? Can you provide that information in an engaging way?

The most successful branded content programs are able to blend messaging in a seamless and transparent fashion, while still getting the information across to the consumer. Branded content creation serves several purposes: customer entertainment, stealth advertising and social engagement.

An industry that has embraced branded content is the fashion industry (see Louis Vuitton’s NOWNESS), but other brands that get it right are:

The iFood application allows users to:

  • Email or print coupons for Kraft products or even add them right to your store savings card.
  • Find recipes and post the ones you love to Facebook
  • Scan and enter a barcode to add to a shopping list or find recipes
  • Print shopping lists, coupons, and recipes
  • Get detailed recipe directions and even video tutorials
  • Set alerts about planned recipes, recopies of the day or special offers
  • Find a retailer to buy your products

Now, tell me that wont build more consumer loyalty?

Branded content is about creating an experiential story; It’s about crafting stories though every communication tool – signage, display advertising, print, radio and television ads, that are then translated to the web, social networks and now mobile apps. In the end it really comes down to knowing your customer extraordinarily well. By consistently engaging your audience via editorial content that is expertly mixed into the e-commerce landscape, you can tie sales. The best social media and branded content executions out there are driven by narrative, not commerce.

Branded content is quickly becoming a cost effective, long-term online marketing strategy that industries will continue to utilize as brands and retailers look for new, innovative ways to connect with customers online.

What impact do you think branded content can have on consumer behavior and where do you think this technique is headed in the future? We’d love to hear, so post a comment on The Side Note Blog, send us a tweet @Weise_Ideas, or find us on Facebook: Weise Communications.


TV shows about salad dressings and lipstick? Welcome to the (advertising) world of Webisodes

Product placement has existed for years. Companies pay big money to get their product placed in a movie or TV show. The blockbuster hit “New Moon” has a Burger King bag precisely placed in the middle of a scene, and “American Idol” may as well be called “Coca-Cola’s Idol” with the grotesque amount of product placement on that show.

But what happens when the entertainment outlet doesn’t exist for your product? You call in the advertising agencies that know how to get creative, and then you create your own entertainment outlet. Welcome to the world of Webisodes.

According to Wikipedia, “A webisode is simply a web episode – collectively it is part of a web series, a form of new medium called web television that characteristically features a dramatic, serial storyline, where the primary method of viewership is streaming online over the Internet. While there is no set standard for length, most webisodes are relatively short, ranging from 4–15 minutes in length.”

Stuart Elliot in a New York Times article writes, “Webisodes — part of a trend called branded entertainment — are growing because marketers feel compelled to find new methods to reach consumers in an era when the traditional media are losing eyeballs, ears, hearts, minds and perhaps other body parts to the Internet.”

Webisodes are being created to advertise everything from makeup to cleaning products and salad dressings. And, like most advertisements that run when and where the target audience is viewing, Webisodes are being placed on specific Web sites that reach the most appropriate audience. Hidden Valley Ranch Webisodes, for example, star Jenny Garth and will be featured on starting this January. I personally like Jenny Garth, the new queen of Webisodes, but I hope the “entertainment” is strong since I can’t really get my head around being interested in ongoing mini-shows about salad dressing.

A Webisode currently getting plenty of attention is Maybelline’s “The Broadroom” (also starring Jenny Garth). Episodes for your entertainment are below.

What do you think? Are Webisodes the new marketing platform that will get your attention? Not cheap to produce, are they worth the cost? What products would you like to see in a Webisode?

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