How to Drive Consumer Connections With Content Marketing
Achieve brand awareness and impact by developing deeper relationships with consumers through immersive content experiences and storytelling
When choosing a new car, consumers aren’t just looking for a vehicle that gets them from point A to point B, they are looking for a vehicle that represents their lifestyle and personality.
Tactically, it may be a car that safely transports their children to school, takes their friends on road trips, and provides a reliable, trusted means of transportation for the next five years.
But consumers are also looking for a personalized auto experience. Smart auto marketers recognize this need and are turning to content to engage consumers with highly emotional, relatable stories and content.
Consumers are multidimensional, and often look beyond the practical purchase elements to the emotional connections that they establish with brands.
The key to driving these connections is by developing content campaigns (versus commercials) that establish authentic relationships based on trust and knowledge of the consumer’s interest and passion.
Why content marketing?
Content marketing helps achieve brand awareness and impact by developing deeper relationships with consumers through immersive content experiences and storytelling.
Take Kia for example, which created a short video featuring a young boy and his father asking each other questions during a car ride through the city. The video explores how his dad would react to him getting a tattoo and what super power they’d give each other, and, it raised brand awareness for Kia through a heartfelt exchange that reaches consumers on a personal level.
There is a misperception that content marketing is too costly and that measurement is difficult. But the good news is that this tactic actually costs 62% less than outbound marketing, and just as importantly, it can generate more than three times as many leads.
Creative, compelling content programs have the ability to lift brand affinity, brand association, and purchase consideration, and contrary to popular belief, it won’t burn a hole in your wallet.
But what sets successful content marketing programs apart from straightforward video commercials? It’s the distribution and really knowing your audience.
Get to know your audience
With 71% of customers noting that they want ads tailored to their preferences, having a deep understanding of your audience—its values, motivators, likes, and dislikes—can help you produce content that will truly resonate with it.
Rather than simply selling a product, the emphasis must be on the narrative and emotional connections, all while understanding what will pique their interests and why. Yes, content should be story-driven and connection-oriented, but you must build meaningful relationships with your audience by first understanding who it is.
In a world where consumers are bombarded with advertisements on every corner and across every device, taking the time to get to know your customer is the only way you’ll break through the noise and leave a lasting impact.
Why using data is key to building smarter content that resonates with consumers
We know that successful content marketing works when you have a deep understanding of your audience, and gathering data and insights on its interests and needs is one of the most effective ways to achieve this.
More than 3 billion people are now using the internet, and marketers need to take advantage of the countless pieces of information that can be used for opportunities to reach and engage consumers. By analyzing the data and understanding consumers’ habits, you can determine which creative strategies will allow you to tell the right story to your target audience.
Content marketers must tap into data points—from interests to locations and more—to craft holistic content programs and to understand what values the target audiences have. It’s crucial to map different human motivations to understand why people are consuming content.
From there, the right kind of content can be developed and then distributed, in the right moment, for the right target audience.
Content marketing should be an integral part of every auto marketer’s strategy as a way to build an experience that’s as personal as choosing a car.
And because 90% percent of consumers like custom content from brands, the key is to ensure you’re offering meaningful, tailored content to truly reach your audience.
Kathryn Friedrich is the chief business officer of RYOT Studio, Oath’s next-generation creative studio that works with leading brands and agencies to make sure a brand’s story isn’t just well told; it’s also well heard. She brings 20+ years of digital advertising and media sales experience, and oversees RYOT Studio’s global growth.