The Secret To Brand Engagement Is For Brands To Support The Creative Process, But Not Meddle With The Creative Process

from the that-would-be-ideal dept

We've talked an awful lot about the intersection between advertising and content over the years, and have been especially interested in how brands can and do interact with various content offerings. But, we always hear fears about how this can equate to "selling out" or somehow weakening the content for creators. And, it should be admitted that this is a legitimate fear if the brand demands too much control. For our media partner, Say Media, I recently wrote up a column pointing out how the problems for brands and content come in when the brands get involved in the actual creative process. However, when they let the content creators create what they want, and simply act as supporters of that process, rather than drivers of it, the creators can retain the artistic integrity, and there's no issue of "selling out." Then it becomes a case of brands supporting an artist -- which fans love -- rather than co-opting an artist, which fans hate.

Over the years, we've noticed that this is definitely a struggle for some brands. As soon as they dump money into a campaign, it's their natural inclination to want to control every aspect of the content that comes out of that campaign -- and that's a huge mistake. We've seen that the more involved a brand is in the campaign, the less effective the campaign is for absolutely everyone. Brands sponsor content creators because they know those content creators have built up a following and can create great content. They need to extend that trust to the point that if they sponsor content creation, the give the creators the free will to do something amazing. Brands may be good at "branding," but if they meddle directly in content creation, the end result doesn't really help anyone.
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Filed Under: brand engagement, brands, content creation, marketing, sponsorshiop

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  1. icon
    cadallamico (profile), 14 Apr 2012 @ 1:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Does it lead to measurable results?

    I find what you say about the non-apologetic nature of landing a sponsor to the point it's a legitimating factor very interesting.

    I wonder if this can work for the music as well, because as musicians and their fans tend to be way more skeptic about brands interfering with their art, to protect it

    I was a participant (as a musician) at the Red Bull Music Academy, and from my experience and the interviews that i carried out to other participants, it is evident that the RBMA has an extreme legitimating factor. The selections are strict, but mostly it has reached a tipping point as far as quality that now it's able to attract the best talent as far as participants, and pretty much music heroes as lecturers (nile rodgers? bootsy collins? bob moog? you name it)

    Whether this is a wise choice compared to absolut's more blatantly commercial i am not sure.. and i'm constantly asking myself if it is worth the investment. Sure they put a foothold in the freshest music scenes around... but then? the product?

    It was really interesting to read your posts on the gift economy and they sparked some ideas...:
    Brands patronizing the arts and becoming "producers" of entertainment enabling others to do it, ok... The problem though is to be credible....
    But what if they succeed in becoming credible (like the RBMA). can this be a sort of new mecenatism, patronizing the arts that can affect the music industry?

    RBMA shows that it's possible to be credible. New musicians still need to stand out from all the music out there, and the Red bull provides a sort of A&R/signalling function like a label would do. Plus artist need to manage to finance their art...and Red Bull can help.
    it looks like all the elements are there!
    what do you think?
    (sorry this is too long... maybe it shouldnt even be in this thread..!)
    my email is

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