Rico Chan
Dec 2, 2016

Content marketing in a mobile-first world

Yahoo's Rico Chan explains why getting your mobile messaging right is crucial for marketers in APAC.

Rico Chan
Rico Chan

Shifting mobile consumption trends give brands excellent opportunities to engage with their consumers day-and-night in different contexts, places and times. Brands must now engage with all those connected consumers by sharing the brand messages or stories that segue well with what the consumers are doing on their mobile at a given point of time.

It is becoming essential for brands to maintain a high degree of relevance for their messages through thoughtful content marketing. Brands need to assume the role of a publisher or at least think like one: just as the latter keeps the interest level of its audience in mind, so should the brands in devising their brand stories.

Creating innovative strategies

While many brands are embracing the power of content marketing, only a few have succeeded in adopting innovative content marketing strategies that break through today’s cluttered digital landscape. The campaigns that click typically play on human emotions, trending subjects, and visual appeal.

For instance, GoPro, a renowned maker of versatile cameras, has over 3.2 million YouTube subscribers and an Instagram account with over 6.1 million followers—and counting. The unique aspect to their content marketing effort is that GoPro makes its customers the hero of their stories—who are seen as a happy, adventurous community of users in incredible photo/video shoots set in breathtaking locales around the world.

Brands are creating, sharing and proliferating their stories with imaginative thinking, creative use of different technologies and media platforms and making bold decisions. To give an example, a few months back Nescafe shifted its entire web presence to Tumblr rather than rely on the traditional “.com website” as the primary consumer destination. Tumblr allows fans to share images, videos, GIFs and other content uploaded by the Tumblr community that treats coffee not merely as a product but an everyday reality they love. According to Nescafe the move has not only “grabbed people’s attention” but also boosted sales.

In another example, Lipton and Yahoo Singapore recently came together to create a branded content destination called "LEPAK One Corner" on Yahoo Lifestyle. Users can find lighthearted lifestyle and entertainment content during their mid-afternoon 'lull time', just when they most need an indulgent and revitalising break.

How can brands stay connected?

In a mobile-first, hyper-connected world, brands must ensure that their content or message is of interest or value to customers, and the format of the ad fits into the overall design of the content they are consuming. In other words, ads that are creative, engaging and contextual. Native advertising solutions tick all these requirements, seamlessly integrating with the content of a page, without disrupting the user experience on mobile.

Additionally, brands need to personalise content by balancing the consumer’s ‘need to know’ with their ‘want to know.’ In a recent survey, 78 percent of consumers told Yahoo they want some degree of personalisation, with 62 percent preferring a mix of algorithmic and curated content. No wonder we are seeing more personalised news feeds on our social networks that correspond to our preferences and behaviour.

Brands should also capitalise on the great opportunity presented by the rise of messaging apps—not only is the user base of such apps in the hundreds of millions, they are among the most actively used apps. Brands can leverage the advantages these apps bring: highly personal content; messaging in one-to-one, one-to-many and many-to-many conversations; and multimedia integration. Depending on the context and usage, they can have their messages delivered to fit varying needs.

In short, brands that can capture the attention and mindshare of mobile consumers will continue to win a happy share of their wallets too. Mobile has become one of the most valued marketing mediums where content marketing is seeing the greatest benefit. The connected mobile consumer is not your typical ‘creature of habit’, drinking in your messaging from a cup of your old-school advertising brew. They’ll love you if serve it hot and to their liking.

Rico Chan is vice president and head for India, Southeast Asia and Hong Kong at Yahoo.

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