When things get personal, brands win

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I’m a Broncos fan, and boy was last night hard to watch. I’m also a marketer. This year, the anticipation of the Super Bowl held the promise of my beloved Broncos returning to dominance, and lessons through entertainment from brands that are household names and those looking to gain new audiences. According to the Content Marketing Institute, Content Marketing is “the art of communicating with your customers and prospects without selling.” I read post after post from “fans” that watched the Super Bowl last night for the art. At Trapit we are feverishly working to build tools that enable marketers to surface only the most relevant content for their constituents. This year I was really excited to see how brands would incorporate content marketing elements into their commercials. Let’s take a look at a couple examples:

Squarespace: “A Better Web Awaits” –Believe it or not, Squarespace has been around for 10 years. This commercial features one web challenge after another for a total of 74 annoying things about the internet from things like virus warnings to a dig on parents who over-share photos of their children on social networks. They close with “we can’t change what the web has become but we can change what it will be, a better web starts with your website.” This commercial appeals to the individual pains as a consumer on the internet, and then attempts to switch to appealing to a business or brand. Perhaps if it had stuck with one user over the other it would have been more successful. This one is getting low marks all the way around this morning.

Coca Cola America is Beautiful- In this mashup of different voices and languages there are unique American faces — white, brown, young, old, gay, straight, all singing different portions of America is the beautiful. Coca Cola has always strived to be a brand that unites consumers around a single idea that we are many but united. This commercial is creating a great deal of buzz and a fare amount of backlash for Coca Cola. Buzz is buzz so this one goes down for a win for Coca Cola.

Beats: Goldilocks- The commercial opens with “Once there was a girl hungry for the perfect music to dance to”. Beats music is using the Super Bowl as their launching pad for what they call the 2nd generation of music streaming services. When you visit their website, they describe their product as the first music service that understands you. Pandora, Netflix, and Amazon are stellar brand examples of how this type of personalization changes the consumer experience. Beats is going after mainstream listeners and, more specifically, women. According to Nielsen demographic data, 46% of the Super Bowl viewing audience is female, and more women watch the game than the Oscars, Grammys, and Emmys combined. I’ve been a loyal Spotify listener for almost two years, but I’m signing up for Beats today to check them out. Their ad worked on this woman.

Microsoft: “Empowering” Microsoft has been a long time supporter of the Seattle Seahawks, but in this ad campaign we see Microsoft attempting to bring humanity and technology together. They dabbled with this in the 90s but for the better part of the last 20 years this is an angle they have stayed away from. They are getting personal. It’s hard to watch this and not feel a tinge of gratitude for how technology enriches our lives. Win for Microsoft.

I have had a John Elway Starting Line-up figurine since I was a kid. It went to college with me, and it’s been on every desk for every job I have had in the last twenty years. That figurine and the memories of him serve as a constant reminder to me to never give up, leave it all on the field, and strive for excellence. Every time I see it I am flooded with childhood and professional memories of challenge and triumph. Let’s face it, most of us will never get the chance to play in the Super Bowl or work on a Super Bowl campaign. But, I’m convinced there has never been a better time to be a marketer. The best marketing efforts get personal and provide value. When consumers feel like you get them and have something worthwhile to give and you aren’t just selling them, they will flock to your brand. Are you doing everything you can to give your prospects and customers the content they need to be successful? At Trapit, we believe the content you share has to be personal and relevant. If you want to learn more about how we do that, come check out one of our demos.


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