After dozens of conversations with publishers across all media types, fact-finding calls with organizations from big to small, discovery work with R&D partners working in the branded content space and an application process that drew nearly 40 publishers from all over the world, we have a clear understanding of not only what’s working when selling branded content, but also what’s not. We can see three distinct areas that are holding back significant growth for many branded content initiatives.

The number of options in a sales rep’s toolbox is unmanageable. Which screwdriver is the right fit when you have twelve in there? We need to help our sales force understand when to use branded content as a powerful tool, what are the value propositions, how this type of advertising can work for their clients and what to expect during their campaign.

Pulling reports is not just time-consuming, but it is also complicated. We need better ways to show the value of branded campaigns to our advertisers. We need to drive the conversation with our clients to guide their expectations and explain why branded content is effective for certain campaigns and why the return is different than traditional digital advertising.

The sales reps need a stronger understanding of what they are selling and the advertisers need to understand what they are buying. Your sales executives need tool kits and marketing materials to help with the education process and secure these unique opportunities for advertisers.

How do we fix it?

We need to work together and share what’s working, and what isn’t working.

Through the Branded Content Project, we’ll share sales training strategies, progress on innovative testing and advertiser research. We will be creating tools and resources to help your teams succeed with branded content.

Find the Branded Content Project at industry events this summer to gain insights and learn along with us as we share updates and information from publishers pushing the industry forward with branded content.

Share the infographic below with everyone who works, builds and distributes branded content. Together we will all grow stronger!