October 10, 2016
When I first heard this term from my Mentor during my Summer Internship Days, I, like most others, was foggy as far as the concept was concerned.
Like What is Branded Content?! Why will it become the next big thing?! I mean, how is it different from the daily Television Commercials (TVC)?!
I am sure, there are many who is facing these kinds of doubts and dilemmas. Let me take a walk step by step!
In simple language, a Branded Content is a medium of promotion of a brand through a short story, keeping in mind, the positioning of the brand in a subtle way.
Yes, exactly. Gone are the days of a 30 seconds TVC, because the audience is getting bored with Direct Advertisements in the Television. The audience is ready to gulp stories having a good content, no matter how subtle is the brand promotion! Oh yeah, if the content has got a social cause, that will be an icing on the cake.
Well, I hope the “what” portion is clear. If not, the links below and the clipping will clear the doubts. Let us take an example. TVF’s “Permanent Roommates” is going viral nowadays. And we see how OLA Cabs are integrating in the content of the “Permanent Roommates”. OLA is not taking up separate seconds from the content to promote itself; rather it subtly uses “Purushottam” and is achieving its target.
The preceding snap is the famous "Creep Qawwali" conceptualized by AIB. While watching this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fvhePR6WEVs) we forget that this is basically a Branded Content of a dating site named Truly Madly. However, the way it integrates the methods of modern dates makes it one of the best in this segment.
Let us have a view of how “Kissan” has done this superb piece of Branded Content with a social message in it. https://www.facebook.com/ParminderSinghBrarOfficial/videos/1046419578766346/
And now we will see how “Acer” integrated itself with IPL Team Royal Challengers Bangalore and created this wonderful content, which has got a pretty simple plot yet interesting.
One thing we noticed, in the examples given above, mostly, if not all, are digital content. Yes, exactly “that” is one of the prime reason “Why will Branded Content be the next big thing”! This generation of ours are exposed to digital medias compared to televisions. We do not mind spending hours after hours in the social media and we prefer digesting the daily news update through digital media rather than the traditional newspaper. And there is where Branded Content has nailed it. To the “netizens”, Branded Content is the king. And, this is why, it is going to stay.
Now let us not confuse Branded Content with the Television Commercials or say the AFPs (Advertiser Funded Programme). There is a very thin line of difference between TVCs, AFPs and Branded Content. Once we understand the difference, the concept of Branded Content becomes very clear. AFPs are those where the Brands are directly promoting themselves, and not integrating within the content of the program. “Wheel Smart Shreemati”, “Hero Roadies”, “Bourn Vita Quiz Contest” are famous examples of AFPs, where we see that there is hardly any integration of the brand in the programme.
AMUL is one of the oldest players in Branded Content, however it concentrates on Print and Outdoor Media. This one is the latest of the lot:
I hope I can clear the concept of Branded Content to some extent. However, the best approach to have the concept crystal clear is going through more and more digital contents.