10 Companies that successfully created content brands - Here's how they did it!
Content brands have a couple of things in common. These companies:
- Build their own audience and create useful, engaging, and relevant content for them.
- Focus on the long-term benefits of content marketing.
- Have an elaborate, agile approach.
- Act like a media company.
And of course, these brands receive unfair advantages: more loyal customers, higher profitability and greater distribution in both search engines and social channels.
But how can your business become a profitable content brand? Read on and be inspired by how these ten companies managed to pull it off.
GE understands the business value of content in a B2B context. They publish Txchnologist and GE reports among others, with huge success. These publications strengthen the brand and reinforce their position in the marketplace by sharing innovative stories. Plus, GE uses the smartest content marketing trick of them all: they show their expertise rather than talking about it. As result, they become more credible. B2B companies have much to learn from GE’s content brand.
Lego is known for its creative and playful content. The Lego Movie is an example of how a company can generate product demand, without it feeling forced. In addition, Lego has managed to create a community around its products by using various magazines, websites and member clubs. The community feeling is enhanced through a common passion for building blocks. Various competitions also give the members a chance to share their own Lego creations. This builds trust and loyalty for the brand in the long term.
The Marriott hotel chain has a long and proud history of content marketing. Their new major initiative is to create a media company for future travellers. The Marriott has already produced two hit films on YouTube. French Kiss raked in 600,000 USD … in hotel bookings alone.
The aim in the longer term is to become the leading provider of travel and lifestyle content for a new generation of travellers. The content studio is in place, and the Marriott is well on track.
Stiff competition from cheaper food supermarket chains has forced Sainsbury’s to think again. As marketing director Sarah Warby put it, ‘If you are not feeling and acting like a publisher, you are missing a massive trick.’ This focus on content marketing has yielded tangible results. In recent years, Sainsbury’s has invested in their own food magazine and food programmes. These investments have contributed to the food company managing to be on top in a highly competitive market. Nowadays, it is always ‘content-first’ that applies.
This company has taken the world by storm by its fast-paced races, large events and inspirational content. Red Bull have the courage to do things differently and are constantly pushing the limits.
Red Bull stands for something that appeals to their buyers. A winning recipe. The question remains: are you doing this? Red Bull Media House continues to break new ground and experiment with its content worldwide.
What do you get if you take a man with a blog and a loyal audience?
Answer: a software company with a turnover of millions.
Copyblogger is one of the world’s most popular marketing blogs. Its founder, Brian Clark, suggests companies build an audience first. Not until you have an audience in place should you consider creating products and services for them. Taken to heart, his advice means you’re more likely to build something that people actually want. Test your assumptions early, and act on the real-world feedback you receive from your audience.
Riverpools and Spas
The economic crisis of 2008 hit Marcus Sheridan’s pool company hard. How would he get it back on its feet?
His response may sound simple and obvious now: Mr. Sheridan started to answer customers’ questions. Then he published them on the company website.
Today, the Riverpool and Spas learning centre is one of the company’s most valued resources that continues to generate new customers. How do you answer your customers’ questions? Listen, answer and be useful. Content that solves customer problems creates both confidence and interest.
The social media tools business is tough. How can a young company get established in the market?
Buffer has succeeded with the help of engaging content. The Buffer blog covers everything from social media to productivity and happiness. A major focus is on personal development and the relationship between work, technology and well-being. The blog is used to attract new customers, but also as a tool to recruit loyal employees.
Jyske Bank TV
Can a bank really create its own TV channel? Sure it can.
Jyske Bank TV is a news service that produces content in both English and Danish. The person behind the success is its Communications Director Lasse Hoegfeldt. Back in 2007, he understood the implications of the changing media landscape.
What can we do to reach our audience without being dependent on traditional media channels? The answer was Jyske Bank TV. And fortunately, it turned out he was ahead of the game.
Bed manufacturer Purple Mattress has launched a blog – sorry, a snooze feed – which dives into the science of sleep. They have created a content brand around their articles and videos, mixing scientific facts with useful, fun tips on how to improve your sleep. And they’re only getting started.
In conclusion, brands are balancing the roles of both publisher and distributor. It is no easy task, but there are many benefits for the companies that succeed.
A content brand has:
- Contact with a loyal audience, making it easier to create products and services that people actually buy.
- Engaging content that works around the clock to create and nurture customer relationships.
- A media house approach that creates long-term business.
Successful companies create engaging content that attracts the right audience. Those who don’t invest in content end up on the outside. Will your business succeed in becoming a content brand, or will it disappear in the crowd?