When it comes to creating content, there are key factors that every brand should consider. Amongst other elements, one of the most important points about content is the need for a strong strategy. Unfortunately, it is not enough to just create great content and share it with the world, hoping that it achieves the impact you want.
Content is all about variety and different perspectives. Last year at WTM London, we caught up with a host of experts from a variety of fields to discuss what is required to create that thumb stopping killer content strategy!
We had the pleasure of welcoming Geoffrey Goodwin, Senior Director of video at Oath, discussing content partnerships, plus a collaboration with David Meany, Director of Partner Marketing at The Travel Corporation, Adam Middleton, Head of Strategy and Insights at UNILAD, and Emma Hallington, Market Manager at Visit Scotland, sharing their insights on the strategy behind their recent work together. We also had our partners Whalar join us, together with some fantastic content creators, sharing their firsthand insights on creating unique content and working with destinations around the world.
Here are 10 key takeaways from the presentation;
Know your brand
First and foremost, you need to understand the pillars that define your brand in order to then carve out your brand’s identity with strong content that makes sense for your brand. If you don’t understand your brand, how can anyone else? In addition to factors such as brand values and voice, you need to know your brand so you are aware of your position and reach within the market.
Know your audience
Once you have a clear set of brand values, you can then craft a story through strong content. Before you can do this however, you need to know exactly who your key audience is so you can effectively position the right content to the right audiences. Without knowing your audience, who are you speaking to?
Today, it’s all about authentic, memorable travel experiences and the best way to communicate this is through inspirational content and aspirational messages. Advertising on social media is not going to achieve the desired impact, especially to the millennial audience for example.
Authenticity is key
This is very closely linked with creating inspirational content. Authenticity is key and should be at the heart of any content strategy. Communicating an intangible product can be challenging and the only way to do this effectively is by communicating the intrinsic value to build an emotional connection.
Storytelling is a very effective way to build an emotional connection with the customer, with stories the audience cares about and can relate to in some way. David from Contiki shares insights on how particular passion points have enabled strong storytelling and emotional connections with its core audience.
Influencers are also key in telling your story while achieving a broader reach than you may be able to alone, however it is important to think about the story you want to tell and then look for the best influencer to tell that story. It is essential to have a good relationship and mutual passions and interests for this strategy to be authentic.
Know your platform
When it comes to creating the content itself, think platform first and define exactly what you want to achieve. In terms of the younger audience, Gen Z, it is social first. Social needs to be at the forefront of your strategy when it comes to engaging with this audience, and you have to consider your target audience and where they will consume the content. Strong social content is also an effective way of engaging interest in the first instance, and then driving the user off the platform to the destination website or other channels, searching for more information.
One size does not fit all
It is also important to note here that one size definitely does not fit all. It is important to create different pieces of content for different channels in order for it to be effective. What may work on one, will not necessarily work on another so it is essential to think about the platform first and who your key audience is on that platform.
Set clear objectives
It is essential to determine clear objectives when developing a content strategy. It is also useful to consider the whole customer journey, to successfully create and position the right pieces of content for the right audience.
Data is essential in understanding your key audience and customer behaviours. These valuable insights can then feed into content planning and creation, ultimately creating content your audience will genuinely be interested in.
Lastly, as Contiki, Visit Scotland and UNIlad have demonstrated, forming strong brand partnerships can be highly beneficial in achieving optimum reach and commercial objectives collectively.
We hope you find these takeaways useful for your destination. If you have any points to add, please do share your thoughts in the comments below, we would love to hear them!
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