Looking back at the headlines from this year’s SXSW, one of them really shocked me, but not for the typical reason. It wasn’t so much that I was deeply concerned about Lady Gaga potentially NOT coming out of a giant bag of Doritos, or at least, that wasn’t the whole thing. It was that Gaga and Doritos had exactly nothing to do with one another.
Now the Frito-Lay company is a big one, they can drop money on A-Listers without losing any sleep, regardless of whether the content actually has any actual relevance to their product. Not that I wouldn’t put it past Momma Monster to show up in a dress made out of corn chips. But the issue for me comes up when a client says ‘We need to do something like that‘ because they just mean ‘get me attention like that’. But strategy to me is doing that, without expecting to have that spend, get that kind of attention, AND HAVE IT BE AUTHENTIC. Once a client says that, I have to question whether they’re in it for the long-term.
To be clear, this is an issue of relevance–not money, not celebrity. If my job is to get your new IT company’s name out there to start-up companies, slapping a sponsorship on a live show isn’t going to do too much when your brand is not what people came to see. My job is to make sure nothing our clients do is anti-climactic. How do I make them relevant to the big SXSW picture? Why will people care?
The key thing about good content marketing for companies looking to revamp, revitalize, or reveal is to keep content related to your product and/or service. Are you the aforementioned IT company? You’re handing out ‘Surviving the Technologically hopeless’ pamphlets at the technology convention the week before Thanksgiving. Before you play the IT department to your family home. IE, your mother.
It’s that simple. Content marketing has the ability to go beyond just getting a performer to make music in front of a branded stage- and in most cases it should.
I’m still waiting on the ‘Lady Gaga Goes All out in Dorito Pasties’ article though. Shout out to April Bingham on this one BTW.