We asked Johanna Krantz, Commercial Director of the EMEA region for Reuters, what trends she had seen in content-led advertising before she joins us as a jury member for the World Media Awards 2019.
WMA: As a judge, what are you hoping to see in the entries to the World Media Awards?
JK: I’d like to see smaller, maybe more niche/vertical (B2B) agencies/clients enter and showcase their ideas and executions as they’d be different to the larger, perhaps more money rich, B2C campaigns we see regularly.
WMA: For brands in the technology and telecommunications sector, what are the particular challenges when targeting an international or cross-border audience?
JK: To get an overall message across cultures effectively, i.e. a message that resonates internationally, not just in one market. It needs a human aspect or an emotional pull…
WMA: For entries in this category, are there any particular elements you would expect to see in a winning entry?
JK: Coming back to the above, it needs a human aspect, where it’s connecting people rather than just selling a brand (solution or service).
WMA: Why do you think there has been a growth in content-led advertising communications?
JK: I believe people want more from their experiences, not just being sold something. They want to learn, gain something for the cost of their attention. Most people don’t mind if the ad/content is sponsored so long as they get something from it.
WMA: What do you think are the most important factors to consider when creating content-led advertising?
JK: If you have the right media partner, you will get relevance and most likely the best type of content resonating with the user.
Story-telling is a buzzword at the moment but it IS important, and mainly so because people demand it as they want more and more from their experiences. Once they relate with the story (if it’s genuine), they’ll connect with the brand.
WMA: What do you think is the key to truly engaging content?
JK: A human pull, or a political stance; current examples are Iceland (palm oils/orangutans) and Nike (Colin Kaepernick).
WMA: How do you measure success when it comes to content-driven advertising?
JK: Social listening, search, site traffic.
WMA: What advice would you give a brand about to embark on a branded content campaign that needs to work in multiple countries or regions?
JK: To think ‘big,’ and not on a message or idea that is too local, and most importantly to research the markets in detail. What sets the markets/regions apart? What pulls them together?
WMA: What distinguishes the “international” target audience from “domestic” audiences – and how granular can you be in your targeting?
JK: This depends on the markets and the sectors/industries involved. Technically, you can be as granular as you want, but does it make sense to do so in terms of messaging? Again, this depends on the messaging.
WMA: How do you balance planning and implementation of cross-border campaigns between “local” and “head” office?
JK: The locals should have substantial input on differences and peculiarities, but it needs to be pulled together by HQ who have a fuller overview and a “heads up” approach as opposed to a more penetrative or specialised view.
WMA: What do you need to look for in your media partner[s] when planning an international content-driven advertising strategy?
JK: DO they align with your brand ethos? Does their content support your brand messaging? Have they got previous and successful experiences?