How Seattle Brands Are Keeping Up With Content Trends

on Content Trends, Sharethrough Events, The Future of Advertising

This year, we are taking NATIVE on the road and visiting brand marketers in cities across America. Unlike our annual Native Advertising Summit, this is an intimate and interactive salon where brands, agencies and marketers can come together to learn from each other in a lively discussion.

In Seattle, marketers joined us from Microsoft, REI, Possible, Razorfish, Amazon, and SMG, among others. Here's what we learned.

Five Insights From Seattle Brand Marketers

1. Leverage organizational change

There are digital teams, content teams and different silos across organizations, but with the pace of change and the need to get brand stories out quickly, think about how to disrupt the structure. SMG embeds content experts into each unit.

We’re trying to reverse it. Rather than create content and then promote it, flip it, must set media plan in time to inform content creation - Andrew Grinaker, Possible

2. Develop great brand content, then promote it

Is there a method to the madness? Yes, users see brands as a trusted source and expect authenticity. Know the publishers and partners that complement the brand. Allow your partners to have the creative freedom to build the brand story in their own voice since they know what resonates with their audiences.

Why have publishers create this really great stuff if you're not going to amplify it? - Shelley Morrison, Razorfish

3. Native can be full funnel

Microsoft uses Marketo to capture leads and measures every interaction to see how it contributes to turning click in to a customer. Yet as marketers, we all have to get better at attribution and there is a balance with gating all of your content. You don't want your headlines driving to lead forms, you want them to drive to stories.

Native is one of the key touchpoints to driving the ultimate conversion - Greg Fuller, Microsoft

4. Promote your PR and earned media

Some of the best stories about your brand are not written by brands. Consumers trust their peers, influencers and third party reviews. Alaska Airlines promoted lifestyle articles about destinations, Hulu promoted a Glamour article written about the Mindy Project and Cadillac promotes car reviews.

We don’t send a single PR piece out without a paid component - Jon Yang, Weber Shandwick

5. Videos are silent, they autoplay and they are vertical

70% of sound is disabled on mobile devices. Closed captioning and the headline are critical to a user understanding what the video is about. The first three seconds of the video are also critical to keep a user engaged with watching the rest of the video. Creative strategies are changing as we understand user behavior.

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Sharethrough kicked off the Native Salon Series in Seattle last Wednesday. It was a great event that included an...

Posted by Sharethrough on Monday, March 28, 2016