This post was originally published for LinkedIn and can be read here.
LinkedIn is showing us all the power of great content to connect us with a brand. This post itself is an example of the ways they are sourcing content which in turn brings us closer to LinkedIn's own brand.
The three big trends in paid media can be good for both brands and consumers if brand embrace content marketing and use smart tactics and make good use the latest ad tech.
1. Native: Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn all use promoted updates, tweets, or posts as a core revenue driver for their platforms. Each of these is a form of native ad. The promoted content is a story (full of text and often images) that express a message, wrap it up in a package that's consistent with the platform, and deliver it to a target audience through paid media. What's unique about native ads is they match the environment they are displayed in, and to do that in a content rich environment the ad must be content rich. This is similar to TV but using written and image based storytelling over video production.
2. Programmatic: You don't think of branding when you think of programmatic advertising. RTB was built around the clickthru not engagement. Things change however when you replace the flat ad creative with a brand story. Targeting based on the context of the story and the context of the publisher property become possible. I expect a lot of exciting developments to arise in the near term.
3. Mobile: We all know Twitter and Facebook are mostly mobile...and there is a good chance you're reading this on your iPhone or Android device right now. Brands are looking for new ways to gain benefits on this platforms, the most direct is through publishing better content.
It makes sense that native and programmatic as described above will work best for both brands and consumers on mobile devices. At Flite we're working on exciting ways to combine the three trends for brands and we are seeing great results in return.